Chairman and CEO of C.V. Starr & Co. Maurice R. Greenberg (center) is presented with an award by Chinese Ambassador to the U.S. Cui Tiankai (right) and Xu Chen, Chairman of the China General Chamber of Commerce-USA, at a CGCC gala on January 7 (COURTESY OF CGCC)
Chinese and U.S. officials and business leaders called for closer bilateral cooperation during the Chinese Lunar New Year of the Pig Gala hosted by the China General Chamber of Commerce-USA (CGCC) in New York on January 7.
The year 2019 marks 40 years since the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and the United States.
"History has shown us that for China and the United States, cooperation benefits both countries while confrontation hurts both sides. Therefore, cooperation is the only correct option for us," said Cui Tiankai, Chinese Ambassador to the United States, during his keynote speech.
"Profound changes have taken place in both countries and in the world; we are not the same as 40 years ago. Thus, our relations have to evolve with the times. But all this only underscores the need for closer China-U.S. cooperation and the dire consequences if we fail to do so in this fast changing world," Cui said.
The ambassador reiterated that China remains committed to expanding its cooperation with the United States on the basis of mutual benefit, managing their differences on the basis of mutual respect, and developing a relationship based on closer coordination, more cooperation and greater stability.
Xu Chen, CGCC Chairman and President and CEO of Bank of China USA, said, "Despite Sino-U.S. economic and trade frictions over the last year, our presence here is a heartfelt gesture and a token of hope. Complex situations and market uncertainties haven't made a dent in our commitment, dialogue or bilateral investment."
Maurice R. Greenberg, Chairman and CEO of C.V. Starr & Co. Inc., who received a China Reform Friendship Medal from the Chinese Government for his contribution to the country's four decades of reform and opening up in December 2018, was also honored with the Goodwill Ambassador for China-U.S. Exchange Award at the gala for his wisdom, leadership and devotion in helping to shape the China-U.S. business relationship.
Greenberg expressed his confidence in the future, "The downs [in Sino-U.S. relations] will disappear and the ups will survive."
Former U.S. President Jimmy Carter sent a congratulatory letter to the CGCC where he stated, "At a time when the relationship is encountering unique and unprecedented challenges, programs like yours are crucial to restoring it while bolstering economic, educational and cultural ties."
Founded in 2005, the CGCC is the largest non-profit organization representing Chinese enterprises in the United States, with a membership of 1,500 Chinese and U.S. companies. As of 2018, CGCC Chinese member companies have cumulatively invested over $120 billion in the United States, and directly employed more than 200,000 people while indirectly employing over 1,000,000.
The annual gala, which is the CGCC's flagship event, brought together more than 450 business leaders, government officials and representatives from other organizations in China and the United States.
Wang Xiangming, President of China State Construction Engineering Corp., was honored with the International Leadership Award for his significant contribution to promoting high industry standards, improving the business environment and fulfilling outstanding corporate social responsibilities. In addition, the Louisiana Economic Development and YCI Methanol One were presented with the Outstanding FDI Partnership Award, in recognition of YCI's $1.85-billion green field investment in Louisiana.
(Reporting from New York City)
Copyedited by Rebeca Toledo
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