Message from the Chair
As the Chair of CanCham, I’m pleased to present you our achievements of 2019. I was happy to be elected last AGM among other prestigious community business leaders, all taking their role at CanCham very genuinely. I’m delighted to say that 2019 was a successful year for Cancham on different fronts.
I have to first thank Mrs. Helene Larochelle for all her great work during her tenure as the Executive Director of CanCham, upon her resignation due to family relocation, we managed to recruit a new Executive Director to lead this great organization, ensuring seamless transition and the execution of the Board Strategy. With the addition of Mr. Mathieu Cormier as Executive Director, our Chamber and all his members can now benefit from his vast network and his business skills. With energy, new ideas and focus on business development and growth for CanCham, we were able to deliver a great year for all our stakeholders.
In light of the current situation of diplomatic relations between Canada and China, we received fewer delegations from Canada to Shanghai in 2019 than prior years. But CanCham continued to grow in terms of membership (corporate and individual). During the year, we furthered our collaborations with external partners, and local, federal, and provincial governments, for the benefit of our members. I would also like to welcome our New Consul General of Canada in Shanghai, Mr. Dave Murphy as our new Honorary President of Cancham. We are pleased to continue good collaboration with his team to ensure good service to our members and our community. We have really come together in face of challenge as a strong Team Canada, as a stronger CanCham!
The Board of Directors and I have been representing your interest to make sure we have a Chamber that can represent us collectively as we work towards our business objectives. We’ve been meeting on a regular basis to discuss important initiatives and ensure good governance. We also created new channels of communication among members. We re-launched social media initiatives like WeChat, LinkedIn and updated our Website with brand new images and an intuitive navigation allowing for great visibility of our Chamber and our Members all over the Internet. I’m proud to report that we have now over 30,000 followers reading about us every week!
I want to give special thanks to all our Platinum members, Manulife, Canpotex, Red Gate Communications, Air Canada, CP, CN, Saimen and Westbank. Your contribution to CanCham makes the wold of difference in our community.
2020 started with a challenging situation as we witness the worldwide outbreak of pneumonia caused by the COVID-19 virus. CanCham is fully mobilized. The safety of Canadian communities living in China is our utmost priority and we are doing everything we can to support you in these difficult times. We have adapted our communication strategy with more Webinars, and regular updates on the situation and its impact on the future of the world economy.
Despite the challenges, many projects are under way to continue to enhance the brand of Canada in China. From KOL Marketing strategies, to Mini Program WeChat application development, to new Sub-Committees, CanCham will continue to be a predominant player in building Canada-China business ties and relationships.
On behalf of the Board of Directors and the Executive Management Team, I would like to again thank all of our members and supporters that have contributed through sponsorships, participation at our events, and by being part of CanCham, a strong Canadian community in Shanghai. We look forward to remaining active and strong in 2020, by connecting and unifying our Canadian and Chinese business communities, stronger together.
Message from the Honorary President
On behalf of the Government of Canada and the entire team at the Consulate General of Canada in Shanghai, I would like to extend my warmest greetings to the Canadian Chamber of Commerce (CanCham) in Shanghai and its members. I have spent most of my career in roles connected to the Asia-Pacific region, and I was extremely excited to take up my assignment as Consul General of Canada in Shanghai last November.
Following more than four years overseeing the commercial program at the Canadian Embassy in Beijing, I now very much look forward to working with friends and partners in the important work of promoting and defending Canada’s significant interests in Shanghai and more broadly in East China.
Allow me to acknowledge the difficulties and challenges that many are facing as a result of COVID-19. I know that many of you have had your lives and livelihoods severely disrupted, and that it may be some time before a sense of normalcy returns. Our attention and services through the crisis have been focused on the needs, the health and safety of Canadians. As the situation evolves in China and around the world, my team and I will re-establish our broader programming, and look forward to support the recovery and growth of Canadian business interests in and with China.
Allow me to reiterate my priorities for the year ahead. The Consulate General is committed to its mandate of consular assistance to Canadians, including continued efforts to secure the release of Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor and clemency for Robert Schellenberg. I am also asking my team to continuously contribute to strengthening the “fabric” between Canada and China – the many threads linking institutions, businesses, civil society, and of course our people – in order that the bilateral relationship becomes more robust and better able to withstand and resolve difficulties. Part of that weaving work involves collaborating and supporting the efforts of our partners, such as CanCham, and clients such as Canadian businesses, to assure access, and expansion of beneficial commercial and economic links with China. And to be clear, I will continue to advocate in China and globally for international rules-based systems, and for the respect and protection of human rights and personal freedoms, including in the context of our commercial exchanges.
As many of you will know, 2020 marks the 50th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Canada and the People’s Republic of China. This year is also the 35th anniversary of the sister city relationship between Shanghai and Montréal, my “two hometowns”. China is Canada’s second largest merchandise trading partner country, our second largest source of international students and of tourist visitors, and an important crossroads for learning, research and capital. China is and will remain important for Canada and our collective connections in and with this country are vital to Canada’s future.
Although 2020 and the Year of the Rat began with a difficult start, we have deep and meaningful connections and I am confident that we will show our resilience. The Canadian Consulate General team and I look forward to continuing a strong and multi-faceted partnership with CanCham, and to deepening our collaboration with the Canadian business community in East China.
Consul General of Canada in Shanghai
Honorary President, CanCham
Board of Directors
CanCham Shanghai is led by a Board of Directors composed of 11 elected directors and 1 ex-officio director. The directors are either Canadian MNCs’ representatives or Canadian entrepreneurs running their own business in China. They represent Canadian industrial diversity and strength on the business scene in China. Board members are responsible for forming and driving the policies as well as providing guidance on all the activities of the Chamber.