Creativity is a fruit of the Year of the Monkey in Chinese astrology that began on February 8. Hamburg has close ties with China and 2016 marks the 30th anniversary of the twinned cities of Hamburg and Shanghai. The Hamburg-Liaison-Office-Beijing also opened early this year. And in November, China Time, a biennial initiative by the Hamburg senate and China to highlight long-term, close bilateral ties, will again bring China closer to Hamburg for a fortnight with around 200 events in the Hanseatic city. And Hamburg also has close links to vibrant Hong Kong.
500 Chinese companies in Hamburg
German foreign trade with Hong Kong grew over 3 per cent to approximately EUR 8 billion in 2015. Firms from Hong Kong have been operating in Hamburg for decades with 40 of 500 Chinese companies headquartered there. Thus events to boost collaboration, political, commercial and cultural exchange are crucial to both nations.
Talk in Hafen-Klub
The Deutsche Hongkong Gesellschaft held a reception on March 3 for Nikolaus Graf Lambsdorff, German Consul General in Hong Kong, attended by 50 guests in the cupola of the freshly renovated Hafen-Klub. Graf-Lambsdorff gave insight into political and economical challenges currently facing Hong Kong and the East Asian region.
Reception attended by 130 guests
The new Chinese year was welcomed by invitation of the Hong Kong Trade Development Council and the Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office on February 23 in the Marriott-Hotel. Around 130 guests including Sun Congbin, Chinese Consulate General in Hamburg attended and Carola Veit, president of Hamburg’s parliament, gave a ceremonial address. Aristo Sham, a young, classical and rising star pianist from Hong Kong, played works by Brahms and Mozart to round off the evening.
More Hong Kong-themed events will be held this year. Leung Chun-ying, Chief Executive of Hong Kong, a high-ranking business delegation and several ministers in his government will visit Germany in September to hold several symposiums under the motto, Think Asia, think Hong Kong. Hamburg will be accentuating the maritime economy and logistics.