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Report from Chroniclelive

Business leaders came together at an international forum hosted by Newcastle Business School to explore trade opportunities with China.
High ranking officials from organisations including the Chinese Embassy,  UK Government, British Council,  China Britain Business Council,  Newcastle City Council,  UKTI and Newcastle Gateshead Initiative spoke at the North East China Business forum hosted by Northumbria University.
The event at the Civic Centre in Newcastle also marked the launch of the 9th China UK Entrepreneurship Challenge competition – an international drive to encourage UK businesses and venture capitalists to support student start-up businesses looking to build commercial relationships in China.
Speakers included SuNan Jiang,  Minister Counsellor for Science and Technology at the Chinese Embassy,  and Dr Nick Rousseau,  head of international innovation strategy at the Department of Business Innovation and Skills (BIS).
Professor Yu Xiong,  chair of technology and operations management at Newcastle Business School, who helped organise the forum,  said: “We hope to use this event to progress innovation-sharing partnerships and to show businesses in the region how they can work with China.
“I’m also delighted that just a year after joining the China UK Entrepreneurship Challenge,  an event hosted by Newcastle Business School has been selected to launch this year’s competition.  The initiative,  which is becoming increasingly popular with universities,  brings together businesses and student-led start-ups looking to develop commercial relationships and open up market opportunities through collaborations between China and the UK.”
Professor Kevin Kerrigan,  executive dean at Newcastle Business School, said: “Newcastle Business School has worked extensively with China for a number of years.  We bring around 700 students from China into Newcastle each year and 800 are currently studying in Hong Kong on our university programme.
“We’ve got more than 10,000 alumni based in China and we’re looking to tap into that community and connect with established businesses in China to help grow the North East economy.”
Newcastle City Council leader Nick Forbes,  said: “Clearly, we must position the North East,  as an integral part of the Northern Powerhouse,  to benefit from this new appetite – we have so much to offer,  and links such as those I made this week will help contribute to the growing confidence about investing in our region.”

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