Posted on October 31, 2018
CUSEF Pivotal in Building China-US Major Power Relationship
IN 2008, the Honourable Tung Chee-hwa founded the China-United States Exchange Foundation (CUSEF), three years after Mr. Tung completed 18 years as the first Chief Executive of Hong Kong upon its historic Return from the UK to China.
Though a highly successful businessman, and not a politician, Mr. Tung was uniquely qualified to serve in this role which replaced the British Governor, and to found CUSEF. He has long been enthusiastic about building positive and productive China-US relations.
As a young man, Mr. Tung studied at Liverpool University, obtained a degree in marine engineering and became a lifelong supporter of Liverpool Football. He then worked at General Electric in the US before returning to China in 1969.
A retired billionaire in his early 80’s, Mr. Tung is currently vice-chairman of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC), a politically and organizationally diverse legislative body advising the government of the People’s Republic of China.
China is now the well-established leader of the BRICs countries, and Goldman Sachs has forecast that China and India will become the dominant suppliers of global manufactured goods and services. It is hoped that recent tariffs mutually imposed by the US and China may actually serve as a basis for both countries to negotiate from strength regarding trade and currency.
American businesses have long realized that China, the most populous country in the world at over 1.3 billion, is too big to be ignored. Additionally, Hong Kong is rated in 2018 as the freest economy in the world. Using GDP as the market value of a country’s goods and services, the United States continues to rank #1. The second country in GDP has 60% of the economy of the US; however, this country happens to be China.
In the words of Mr. Tung, “A strong bilateral relationship between China and the United States is good for both countries and … the world-at-large.” CUSEF plays a vital part in this, by facilitating public-private sector dialogs between both nations, and academic exchanges and policy research, plus building on Hong Kong’s excellent track record of positive, strategic international economic relationships.
Acknowledging that China-US cooperation is key to the global future, CUSEF is helping to build a new model of major power relationship.