Sino-Luxembourg Chamber of Commerce was officially launched

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Luxembourg celebrated an inauguration of the Sino-Luxembourg Trade Chamber (Chinalux). The organization is expected to intensify trade relations between the two countries, which are strongly accelerated during the recent years. Nearly 500 people attended the opening ceremony at the Chamber of Commerce. They were warmly welcomed by the director of the Chamber of Commerce, Carlo Thelen, the Economy Minister, Etienne Schneider, as well as the Chinese Ambassador in Luxembourg, Zeng Xianqi.

Several players have realized the need to establish a body or a common platform to better benefit of it in their business. So the Chinalux was officially launched. It has 20 founding members (total 40 members) including law firms in Luxembourg who already have a foothold in China as Arendt & Medernach, the «Big 4» of the financial sector, banks like BIL, Bank of China and ICBC and Cargolux, which now has among its shareholders the HNCA Chinese group.

Dirk Dewitte is the president of the Chinalux. He explained that the Chamber will be a platform that should boost existing business relations between the two countries but also facilitate the opportunities that exist and create a formal framework between the two countries. According to him «Luxembourg is a small country that is aware of its limits and so it always put forward its advantages through the active government policy abroad. Unlike other countries, it would not attract the Chinese at all costs to keep them on its territory but presented itself as an open door to Europe».

Furthermore its advantageous geographical location, several years ago Grand Duchy also moved forward thanks to Luxembourg companies, who have not hesitated to use the territory of Hong Kong to seduce Beijing with its financial expertise. It is undeniable today that Luxembourg expertise in financial services and in particular in investment funds has attracted China to the Grand Duchy. Today, Luxembourg does not hesitate to play in the big leagues and wants to compete with other major financial centers to attract revenue to be generated by the internationalization of the renminbi (RMB), the Chinese currency.

«There are now 220 billion RMB in assets under management in Luxembourg. Chinese currency deposits have tripled in a year and credits have doubled. There are now 43 «Dim Sum Bonds» (RMB bond) listed in Luxembourg. It is more than in London or Paris», said Dirk Dewitte.

Chinese banks believe the potential of Luxembourg and help to increase its relationship with their homeland: in the recent years three banks have set up their European headquarters in Luxembourg (Bank of China, ICBC and CCB). «They also understand that Luxembourg can serve as a gateway to Europe. I can tell you that two or three other banks should open their offices in Luxembourg by 2015», said Dirk Dewitte .