Our board



Sir Sherard Cowper-Coles KCMG LVO, Chair, China-Britain Business Council; Senior Adviser, HSBC Holdings plc

Sherard worked at HSBC as a full-time employee from 2013 to 2023, initially as Senior Adviser to the Group Chairman and Group Chief Executive, and for eight years heading the Group’s Global Government and Public Affairs functions. On his retirement on 31 December 2023, he was engaged as Senior Adviser to the Group. Earlier he spent over 30 years in the British Diplomatic Service, including working on Hong Kong in the three and a half years up to the handover to China in 1997. He finished his career as Ambassador to Israel, Saudi Arabia and then Afghanistan.

Sherard is Chair of the China-Britain Business Council; Honorary Vice President of the UK Financial Inclusion Commission; a Committee Member of The Hong Kong Association; and a Board Member of Asia House. He is an Ambassador for the Money Advice Trust, and for the Winston Churchill Memorial Trust. He is a member of the fundraising committee for Maggie’s charity, and a Trustee of Arundells, the Sir Edward Heath Charitable Foundation. He is President of the Jane Austen Society.

Sherard is the author of two books: Cables from Kabul and Ever the Diplomat.

Vice Chairs

Mr Duncan Clark OBE

Mr Duncan Clark OBE, Chairman

BDA (China) Ltd
Mr Gordon Orr

Mr Gordon Orr, Non-Executive Board Member

John Swire and Sons Ltd

Mr Kenneth Macpherson, Chief Executive Officer

Europe, Middle East, Asia and Africa, InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG)

Chief Executive

Mr Rob Ismay, Interim CEO & Chief Operating Officer

Board Members

Dr David Pilsbury, Chief Development Officer, Oxford International Education Group

Mr David King, Co-Founder, DK Worldwide

Mr David Slater, Director – International and Head of UK-China Business, KPMG UK LLP

Mr Neil Sampson, Head of International Business & Partner, Rosenblatt

Mr Qing Pan, President, Jaguar Land Rover China

Mr Simon Yang, China President & Senior Vice President, bp

Mr Wilson Del Socorro, Asia Pacific Corporate Relations Director, Diageo

Ms Sharon Cheng, Advisor, Clyde Blowers Capital IM LLP

Ms Suwin Lee, EMEIA EY Private Leader; Partner, International Tax and Transaction

Sir Charles Bowman, Senior Partner & Chairman of China Business Group, PwC

Sir Sebastian Wood, Chairman China, Schroders plc

Co-Opted Members

Ms Caroline Raggett, Managing Director, Board and AgFoodTech, Russell Reynolds Associates

Appointed Observers

Ir Dr Anne Kerr, Chair, the British Chamber of Commerce in Hong Kong

Mr Andrew Pittam, Head of China Department (Bilateral and Strategy), Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office

Mr Fang Wenjian, Chairman, China Chamber of Commerce in the UK

Mr Guy Dru Drury MBE, China Chief Representative, Confederation of British Industry

Mr Julian Fisher, Chairman, the British Chamber of Commerce in China

Mr Lewis Neal, HM Trade Commissioner for China, Department for Business and Trade

Our Honorary President and Vice-Presidents

Honorary President and Vice-Presidents


Andrew Seaton, Vice President

Andrew was Chief Executive of the China-Britain Business Council from 2021 to March 2024. Prior to joining CBBC, Andrew was Executive Director of the British Chamber of Commerce in Hong Kong from 2015-2020, and also served as an Independent Non Executive Director for Wharf REIC Ltd during this time. He was formerly a member of the UK Diplomatic Service spending much of his career working on UK-China relations, including postings to the Embassy in Beijing, as Head of the China Department in the FCO, and as British Consul General to Hong Kong and Macao. Andrew was educated at the University of Leeds and Beijing University.
Lord Sasson

Lord Sassoon, Kt, President

Lord Sassoon is President of the China-Britain Business Council (Chairman 2013-19) and former President of the EU-China Business Association (2013-17).

James Sassoon is Chairman of Sir John Soane’s Museum and a Non-executive Director of Barco NV, Arbuthnot Banking Group PLC and China Construction Bank Corporation. He is a member of the International Advisory Council of the China Investment Corporation.

James began his career at KPMG, before joining S.G. Warburg/UBS Warburg in 1985, becoming a Managing Director.

He was a Managing Director in HM Treasury from 2002 with responsibility for Financial Services and Enterprise Policy. In 2007-8 he chaired the Financial Action Task Force. From 2010 to 2013, he was the first Commercial Secretary to the Treasury, and the Treasury Minister in the House of Lords. He participated in each round of the UK-China Economic and Financial Dialogue from 2002.

James was a Director of Jardine Matheson Holdings (2013-20) and a Member of the Global Advisory Board of Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group (2013-21).

He was born in 1955 and educated at Oxford. He is a trustee emeritus (formerly Deputy Chair) of the British Museum and a former trustee of the National Gallery Trust.
Mr Peter Batey, CMG, OBE

Mr Peter Batey, CMG, OBE, Vice-President

Peter Batey CMG, OBE co-founded Vermilion Partners in 2004. Batey moved to Beijing in 1986 as a representative of Arthur Andersen, subsequently becoming Chief Representative for China. In 1989 he co-founded Batey Burn, a China-focused investment advisory and government relations business. He was a director of Shuijingfang a public company listed on the Shanghai Stock Exchange as a nominee of Diageo Plc from 2007-2013, and served as board director of a number of Chinese and joint venture companies. He was Chairman of the British Chamber of Commerce in China from 1994 to 1996 and successively Vice President and President of the European Union Chamber of Commerce in China 2000-2002. He served as Chairman of the Great Britain China Centre from 2004 to 2014.