Premier courts Chinese in London

| 06/02/2017 | 21 Comments
Cayman News Service

Cayman Premier Alden McLaughlin and Chinese Ambassador to the United Kingdom, Liu Xiaoming

(CNS): The premier went to work on his government’s goal to court Chinese investment Monday when he met with the Chinese Ambassador to the United Kingdom, Liu Xiaoming, at the Chinese Embassy in London. Alden McLaughlin is leading a delegation to the UK for Brexit talks with Foreign and Commonwealth Office officials but he wasted no time following up on his recent announcement that he hopes to see China and Cayman develop a closer relationship. Two other overseas leaders were also at the meetings, hoping to get in on potential business from China.

With the UK’s future departure from the European Union, the ambassador also seemed keen to work on building relationships with the British government and some of its overseas territories. According to a release from the premier’s office, he said the separation was a good time for his country to work with the United Kingdom – and by extension the Cayman Islands – to broaden its global business interests. By working with each other, he said, the countries could all benefit and broaden their mutual interests and draw on their respective strengths.

Liu Xiaoming said he would encourage China’s business leaders to look to the Cayman Islands for opportunities to expand business cooperation. McLaughlin, who revealed new visa waivers for Chinese visitors to Cayman on Thursday, said the two countries already had good relations, with significant Chinese investment and business in Cayman, and he was looking forward to increasing engagement with China in the coming weeks.

When he was in Cayman in January, Xiaoming confirmed a deal with Cayman for China to grant ‘Most Favoured Nation’ status to the Cayman Islands registered ships entering Chinese ports.

Following the meeting with the ambassador Monday, McLaughlin and Financial Services Minister Wayne Panton, who is in London with the premier for the discussions on Brexit, which are likely to affect his area of responsibility the most, had lunch with some of China’s business leaders.

Officials from the premier’s office said business leaders from banking, investment, infrastructure development, telecoms, insurance and renewable energy sectors in China were at the lunch.

Although the PPM is now courting Chinese investment, the party had opposed attempts by the former premier, McKeeva Bush, to strike a deal with one the world’s largest companies, China Harbour Engineering Company, a subsidiary of China Communications Construction Company Ltd, headquartered in Beijing, to build the cruise port.

The deal was derailed by the UK government but it was never entirely clear if the PPM’s opposition to the proposal was because of the lack of process surrounding the potential deal or concerns about the Chinese owning the local port.

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Category: China, Politics

Comments (21)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Looks like we’re going to finally get the Cruise Berthing facility built- Hooray for the people of the Cayman Islands…

  2. anonymous says:

    That is why Chinese get Visa free entry. How one person can be so incompetent, nearsighted and supported by Cabinet?

  3. Anonymous says:

    Is there a Mandarin “A” level?.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Investment does not always infrastructure projects. Increased use of our Financial sector by the Chinese would likely offer many opportunities.

  5. anonymous says:

    What a fool.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Honestly up shits creek in this country when it comes to current politicians (UDP/PPM) and the ones just throwing their hats in the ring for the first time thus far are not worth the vote either.

  7. SMH says:

    McKeeva and UDP were trying to deal with Chinese interests and faced many objections and obstacles from the very same Alden McLaughlin as Leader of Opposition. Caymanians have the memories of gold fish. SMH

    • Anonymous says:

      It wasn’t the Chinese that were the concern ….

    • Tell the Truth says:

      I guess the Hon Leader of the Opossition needs to say why the UK stopped hi from dealing with the Chinese.

      • Anonymous says:

        He should also explain his attraction to a dock which he insisted should be built by CHEC at a starting cost of $300,000,000…..yep three hundred million of debt to the Chinese.
        Go ask the Bahamians about Chinese business practices in Nassau.

    • Anonymous says:

      He also, (and more importantly) faced direct rule from London for attempting to ignore the UK’s policy on tendering. The Chinese knew that McKeeva was a clown XXXXX, and so did London, that’s why the deal was thrown out, nothing to do with Alden.

  8. Anonymous says:

    When it became know that Li Ka-Shing restructured some of his companies here, i was saying we should go to Hong Kong and invite him to visit his money!

    Once it became known that one of the biggest players was doing business here, the others would follow suit.

  9. V says:

    I contend there is little interest in working with the Chinese on a local level. Keep their work in the financial services. It would be prudent to align ourselves with the Americans and Russians.

    • Anonymous says:

      NOT the Russians please. Rude, ill-mannered ,and socially offensive …their business practices are even worse.

  10. SKEPTICAL says:

    With his professional qualification and understanding of legal “maxims”, hopefully “quid pro quo” will be foremost in his mind when negotiating any commercial projects with China

  11. Anonymous says:

    We’re a few years too late to court loose Chinese capital for port or other infrastructure development. The dark pools of sovereign wealth funds that once existed were drained with reckless abandon by many corrupt Chinese officials – many of them fled accountability and resettled in Vancouver with Canadian passports avoiding extradition (and death penalties) back home. Those entities that remain have radically shifted investment criteria mandating either a 100 year global strategic advantage or a bankable real-world ROI. Like Decco/Dart we should expect them to be much more sophisticated and perhaps 5 or 6 chess moves ahead of anyone currently sitting in our LA.

  12. Anonymous says:

    Encouraging the Chinese to investment in the Cayman Islands makes good business sense because the US and Canada will be investing heavily in their own countries in the coming years.

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