The China-Britain Business Council has unveiled the inaugural China-Scotland Business Awards, with The Herald as media partner.
To be held on February 1, between the annual celebration of Burns Night and Chinese New Year, the awards will showcase the progress and achievements of the relationship between the countries as investment from China becomes increasingly important to the Scottish economy.
China this year became a top five source of investment to Scotland. Significant Chinese investment continues to flow into the energy sector, and travel giant C-trip has recently followed its £1.4 billion acquisition of Sky-scanner with a project to create 200 new jobs in Edinburgh
There have also been more Chinese visitors to Scotland, and research and development partnerships continue to thrive between our university sector and some major Chinese corporations, such as Huawei.
Scotland’s manufacturing sector has long been exporting its engineering expertise and technologies to China led by the likes of The Weir Group. Alongside this, Scottish exports are finding increasing numbers of new consumers amongst China’s growing middle class, from fine craft ales through to fresh salmon and Scottish design.
Francois Bourienne, commercial director of the Glasgow Airport, said:
“It is an honour to sponsor the ‘China Welcome of the Year’ category at the inaugural China-Scotland Business Awards, particularly at a time when we are seeing an increase in the numberof Chinese visitors who use Glasgow Airport as a gateway to Scotland. Thisevent is an indication of Glasgow’s success in forging new relationships and opportunities with one of the world’s leading economies. I’m looking forward to celebrating these successes on the night and I’m confident the China-Scotland Business Awards will become a firm fixture in Scotland’s business awards calendar.”
Ian Baxter, director of the Scottish Confucius Institute for Business & Communication, Heriot-Watt University, said: “We recognise that the Chinese Burns Supper provides a great opportunity to highlight that successful business relationships are built on good people-to-people relationships and respect for each other’s cultures. Working between the UK and China can be challenging due to the necessity to navigate the nuances of cultural differences, but as those relationships develop trust and friendship, the outcomes can ultimately be hugely rewarding for all. The CBBC, like the Scottish Confucius Institute for Business & Communication at Heriot-Watt University, can act as a partner in helping
businesses access knowledge and expertise to navigate these relationships and opportunities, and we’re delighted to celebrate examples of successful partnerships with the sponsorship of the Award
Christine Zhang, international senior executive at the High Growth Markets Unit of Scottish Development International, said:
“As Scotland’s economic development arm for international trade and investment of the Scottish Government, SDI is delighted to sponsor the China-Scotland Business Awards. CBBC is one of our important partners and we continue to work closely together to deliver our support and services to both Scottish and Chinese companies, encouraging inward investment in Scotland and helping Scottish-based companies to expand internationally. We are promoting the Awards to Chinese companies.”
There are five categories at the awards: business-education collaboration of the year; established Scottish exporter to China of the year; new Scottish exporter to China of the year; Chinese investor/entrepreneur in Scotland of the year; and ‘China welcome’.
In order to give The Herald’s readership a chance to apply for the Awards, the application deadline has been extended to 5th January 2018. Shortlisted companies will be informed in the early second week of January, and an interview will be conducted with each shortlisted company on 11th January 2018.