Linklaters joins new Advisory Council to maximise UK-China business growth

The China-Britain Business Council (CBBC) has today announced the formation of a new Advisory Council made up of some of Britain's leading business people with important China connections, including leading global law firm Linklaters LLP. The 30-strong group will consist of chairmen and CEOs of FTSE-100 companies and senior partners from the UK’s largest professional services firms, as well as two vice chancellors and coincides with President Xi Jinping’s first state visit to the UK.

The Advisory Council will assist CBBC in framing its strategy for the benefit of all CBBC members in the UK and in China. The Advisory Council will contribute to the UK's collective efforts to ensure that the 'golden era' for UK-China relations also becomes a 'golden era' for bilateral trade and investment.

The Advisory Council will be available as a sounding board for ministers and senior officials to engage with on strategic China business issues, and to engage with senior Chinese leaders and officials.

CBBC Chairman Lord Sassoon said, “In China, there is a government committed to transitioning the economy to one which is driven by domestic consumption and innovation – the so-called ‘New Normal’. In the UK, we have a government committed to deepening the bilateral relationship with China - and to promoting British business at the heart of that relationship. Trade and investment with China has been growing strongly: the Advisory Council is part of CBBC's drive to help business keep up the momentum following the State Visit.”

Robert Elliott, Chairman and Senior Partner at Linklaters, says: “We have a deep-rooted knowledge of Chinese business that few can match, evidenced through our track-record of high-profile inbound and outbound Chinese investments, and being involved in this new initiative enables us to work even closer with the CBBC to further support the development of UK-China business. The launch of the new group at the time of the State Visit demonstrates the UK's desire to maximise opportunities with China and we are delighted to play a key role in this.”

Those who have already agreed to join the Council include Professor Ed Byrne (King’s College London), Lord Chadlington (Huntsworth), Robert Elliott (Linklaters), Douglas Flint (HSBC), Professor Sir David Greenaway (Nottingham University), Moya Greene (Royal Mail Group), Sir Gerry Grimstone (Standard Life), Greg Hodkinson (Arup), Sir Henry Keswick (Jardine Matheson), Uwe Krueger (Atkins), Ivan Menezes (Diageo), John Nelson (Lloyd’s), Sir Alan Parker (Brunswick Group), Ian Powell (PwC), Sir Michael Rake (BT), Xavier Rolet (London Stock Exchange), Richard Solomons (InterContinental Hotels Group), Sir Martin Sorrell (WPP), Dr. Ralf Speth (Jaguar Land Rover), Malcolm Sweeting (Clifford Chance), Merlin Swire (John Swire and Sons), Sam Walsh AO (Rio Tinto), Bill Winters (Standard Chartered), Sir Andrew Witty (GlaxoSmithKline).

Linklaters advised on four significant capital markets deals that are being marked at London Stock Exchange listing ceremonies taking place in London this week. The deals include advising the People Bank’s of China as it issued 5bn of 3.10% bonds due 2016 - this is the first time that renminbi government bonds have been issued outside China, in an attempt to open up an offshore renminbi debt market.