UK-China Business Week 2020 Programme


This unique event programme will take place online from 15th-19th June 2020. Sessions will be held over five consecutive days addressing the primary areas of concern for businesses with existing or aspirational engagement with China. Registered attendees will be able to access the full event programme or select sessions according to your interests.
* Programme under development and subject to change. Speakers TBC and further announcements will be made in due course. 
Day 1 
Monday 15th June

UK and China: building business bonds for the future
9am BST / 4pm CST

Having officially left the EU, the UK is now looking to new international opportunities, under the banner of ‘Global Britain’ – and it is clear that China is one of the key focus markets for UK businesses.

China is already the UK’s third largest trading partner, but with increasingly challenging global market conditions, and with China’s continued policy and regulatory reform, where is the UK-China economic relationship headed over the next five years and beyond?

Join this scene-setting session which presents opportunities and challenges from a UK and Chinese government perspective to learn more.

We are delighted to announce that this session will include expert insights from our esteemed panel of speakers: Sir Sherard Cowper-Coles, KCMG  LVO, Chair, China-Britain Business Council; Gordon Orr, Non Executive Board Member at Swire Pacific, Lenovo, Meituan Dianping and EQT AB ; Chen Wen, Minister and First Staff Member, Embassy of China in the UK; and Stephen Perry, Chair, The 48 Group Club. ​

Register HERE


Market Access Challenges & Opportunities in China
1:30pm BST/8:30pm CST

Covid-19 has reshaped the landscape for international trade and investment. This session will examine what the challenges are for British Businesses to tackle in China – giving perspectives both from inside the China market and from across the whole of UK. We are therefore delighted to bring a first class pool of experts both on China; and International Trade and Investment more widely.
China-Britain Business Council (CBBC) has invited St.John Moore, Chairman of the British Chamber of Commerce in China to deliver highlights of the recently launched British Business in China: Position Paper 2020. Although 2019 saw market openings in some sectors, significant challenges remain for British businesses which will be unpacked through presentation of the position paper Executive Summary.
The presentation will be followed by a panel discussion moderated by China-Britain Business Council Chief Executive Matthew Rous. Joining Matthew will be St.John Moore from the British Chamber of Commerce in China, Guy Dru Drury MBE Chief Representative China, North East and South East Asia at CBI (Confederation of British Industry), Kevin Liu Head of China and Head of Energy Asia Pacific, Scottish Development International, Kevin Shakespeare Director of Stakeholder Engagement at The Institute of Export & International Trade and Damon Peng, Regional Director, East and West China at Invest Northern Ireland to analyse:
  • Where the challenges and opportunities lie for British Businesses in China.
  • Key sectors that have seen the greatest impact
  • Support mechanisms that can enable businesses to pivot accordingly
  • How businesses from across the UK can capitalise on these
Register HERE
Day 2
Tuesday 16th June
In partnership with TONG Digital


The female face of Chinese consumer power: understanding the female economy in Post COVID-19 Era
9am BST/4pm CST

China has 400 million female consumers aged 20 to 60-years old. They represent £10 trillion spending power a year.  The growing ranks of affluent and independent women are making purchasing decisions to reflect their personality and identity. Brands, especially in fashion, beauty, health and wellness sectors, are responding and capitalising on the trend by transforming their approaches to this economy power group. 
This session will address the role and influence of the Chinese female consumer in a post-Covid era.
  • Chinese female consumer – key target groups and purchasing priorities  
  • How does livestreaming and social media fuel the female consumer journey
  • Tips for content branding to engage with Chinese female consumers
  • Emerging new opportunities post-Covid 19

Register HERE

Going Digital: The next frontier for UK Cultural Institutions  
11am BST/6pm CST

The digital economy provides an important platform for cultural institutions looking to engage with Chinese consumers. With the world in lockdown, cultural institutions in both the UK and China are forced to adapt their virtual and online offerings, embracing everything from online collections and virtual exhibitions, to live streaming and collaborations.  This session will explore:
  • How institutions are innovating during the global lockdown;
  • Social Media as a long-term strategic tool for cultural institutions;
  • Lessons we can learn from China on the path to reopening and recovery;
  • Post pandemic digital opportunities for the industry.  
Register HERE

Breakaway session in collaboration with TONG Digital

Meet the Influencer- 2pm BST/9pm CST

Influencers - or ‘Key Opinion Leaders’ (KOLs) - are often at the heart of any successful social or ecommerce strategy in China. The biggest names regularly attract millions of eyeballs; and drive millions in sales. Yet running KOL campaigns can be daunting. From finding the right brand ambassador, to negotiating price, to tracking results, the whole process can be bafflingly opaque. In this session we’ll lift the lid on the Chinese influencer industry, hearing first hand from a panel of KOLs the secrets to collaborative success. Topics for discussion will include:
  • How to source the right KOL for you
  • What to look out for in negotiating terms
  • How to measure KOL success
  • How to develop long-lasting KOL relationships
Register HERE
Day 3
Wednesday 17th June


China’s regional dynamics: emerging opportunities for international graduates

9am BST/4pm CST

Our international panel of speakers will discuss their views on the future of graduate employability and discuss potential changes to the global labour market in a post-COVID-19 era.
The session will explore the following themes and topics:

  • What are the skills needed by the global labour market and how are these likely to change in light of current and future economic and political policy shifts; how can universities keep up with these changes?
  • What do employers think about their current talent strategies and will these need to be adapted to achieve advancement in the market?
  • What are the challenges and mechanisms to support the global mobility of international talents?
  • What is the outlook for the most dynamic areas in China such as the Yangtze River Delta and the Greater Bay Area?
  • What are the emerging opportunities and where are they located?
Register HERE

11am BST/6pm CST

UK-China Tech Forum: re-imagining the UK-China tech relationship in the post-COVID era
Recently, we examined the impact of COVID-19 on China’s tech sector, and Chinese and UK tech firms have responded to the crisis. Building on this theme, we will explore the opportunities to accelerate two-way trade and investment for technology businesses in the post-COVID world.
The session will explore the following themes and topics:

  • What will the main opportunities and challenges in the medium-term for UK-based technology exporters?
  • Which sectors offer the greatest opportunities for two-way trade and investment?
  • What trends are expected to emerge in Chinese tech investment into the UK?
  • What opportunities are there for UK-based start-ups and scale-ups work with Chinese investors?
  • How will growing geo-political tensions impact UK-China tech sector collaboration?
  • How is market access changing in both markets, and what practical steps can tech companies take to circumvent these barriers.
  • How can companies connect, network and communicate with partners and investor effectively in a post-Covid world.
Register HERE

Day 4
Thursday 18th June
In partnership with TONG Digital


China Supply Chain – Managing Current Challenges and Beyond

9am BST/4pm CST

Covid-19 has caused widespread disruption and exposed vulnerabilities in supply chains not only in China, but across the world. Change might be inevitable, so how are companies responding to mitigate risk and ensure the resilience of their supply chains in the future.
Join our panel of experts as we discuss the following topics, as well as answering your questions.

  • China’s emergence from Covid-19 lockdown, how supply chains have been impacted and the challenges currently faced by UK businesses such as increased volatility, new regulations for operations and logistical bottlenecks.
  • Implications for strategy and how supply chains need to be changed to build in value, visibility, agility and resilience
  • Practical advice on effectively communicating and managing relationships with Chinese suppliers and manufacturers in these uncertain times.
  • A look into the medium and long-term future of China in the supply chain: key considerations for companies wanting to understand trends, potential risks and opportunities.
Register HERE
Realising the China opportunity from a distance: finding clients and partners  
11am BST/6pm CST

In the current situation, dealing with the Covid-19 situation and with travel restrictions likely to be in place for some time, this session looks at how this will impact the way in which companies go about finding clients and partners in China in the future.  In particular we will be considering any immediate changes but also expectations for different approaches over the longer term.
We will be joined by leaders with experience of the market, from various sectors and seeking their views on a number of aspects. We look forward to them sharing how they have approached the market in the past and what they would expect to do differently, now and in the future.
  • What have been the typical routes to markets?
  • Which have been most effective?
  • How does the current situation affect these routes?
  • What can be done differently to overcome current restrictions?
  • What lasting changes are anticipated in approach over the long term?
Register HERE

Breakaway session in collaboration with TONG Digital

Pivoting to China through social commerce - 2pm BST/9pm CST

Social commerce is revolutionising the online retail sphere in China. In today’s post-Covid, hyper-digital era, ‘traditional’ routes to cross-border ecommerce no longer capture the attention of the post-90s consumer generation. From live streaming, to Mini Programs, to Key Opinion Consumers (KOCs), brands are turning to content and influencers not only to market but to directly sell their products. In this session, social commerce experts TONG will discuss how brands can pivot to China through the latest in retail innovation.

Register HERE

Day 5
Friday 19th June

The UK pitch: how to present the UK to a Chinese investor from a national strategy to regional implementation
9am BST/4pm CST

According to the Rhodium Group, the UK is the number one destination for Chinese investment across Europe. What are the national policies being pursued by the government and how are regional leaders working to implement those strategies? Hear from leaders in government about such topics as:
  • How national investment strategies relate to regional ones and how municipalities and project owners can use those strategies to shape a message?
  • How regional delegations are received in China, and how companies can build on those visits to create meaningful partnerships?
  • What incentives are in place for foreign firms to setup in the UK?
  • How to encourage Chinese firms to think beyond London?
  • From a Chinese perspective are we getting it right?
Register HERE
A dialogue with John Edwards, newly appointed HM Trade Commissioner for China

10:15am BST/5:15PM CST
As HMTC for China, John will lead on export promotion, inward and outward investment, and trade policy overseas on behalf of the UK government. His work will include developing and delivering a regional trade plan setting out the Department for International Trade’s (DIT) priorities in important global markets.
This session will provide an opportunity for members to hear from John on his approach to his new role, to understand DIT’s priorities going forward, and to ask questions.
  •  Welcome and introduction – Matthew Rous, Chief Executive, CBBC
  •  Update from John Edwards, HM Trade Commissioner for China
  •  Further discussion and Q&A
Register HERE


What excites Chinese investors
11:30am BST/6:30pm CST

The UK boasts 13,000 companies that are part of a China-owned corporate or are majority held by a Chinese national. What are the driving factors that led so many Chinese companies and so much capital to the UK? How can we better understand how Chinese investors think about foreign deals and create a narrative that captures their attention? 
  • What are the current trends in Chinese investment to the UK?
  • What are the sectors or IP that are in the most demand?
  • Get the perspective of a Chinese company investing into Europe, learn what they are they looking for in opportunities and what gets their attention.
  • Hear from a UK firm that was acquired or received funding from China, to learn how it happened and what integration actually looks like.
  • How to sell to a Chinese investor? What are the common mistakes firms make seeking Chinese capital?
  • What to expect from the Chinese investment community in light of current market conditions?
Register HERE