Leeds City Region welcomes Consul General

Consul General, Dr Sun Dali, visited Leeds City Region with the key representatives of major Chinese businesses who have invested in the UK. The delegation met with business leaders from across the region to explore opportunities for collaboration.

Dr Sun Dali, Consul General, Consulate General of the People’s Republic of China led a delegation to visit Leeds City Region in October 2017. Chinese companies represented included the Bank of China, Beijing Construction and Engineering Group International (BCEGI) Hainan Airlines, Air China and Wang Dynasty Group.

The delegation was greeted by the Lord Mayor of Leeds, Councillor Jane Dowson, and Chair of the Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership, Roger Marsh OBE, at Mills & Reeve. The delegates were introduced to Leeds City Region businesses and organisations with links to China and heard presentations from the University of Bradford and Chinese electrical goods manufacturer, Hisense, which has its UK headquarters in Leeds.

Diane Simpson, director of Pudsey-based A W Hainsworth also presented to the delegates. The specialist textile manufacturer, which began manufacturing in Yorkshire in 1783 and whose customers include HM The Queen and the House of Lords, supplies a range of fabrics to China including snooker cloth and piano felt. The country accounts for around 20 per cent of A W Hainsworth’s turnover.

Mills & Reeve has strong links with China and has worked on many deals for Chinese companies including advising a Hong Kong listed company on the acquisition of three UK private schools with an aggregate consideration of £40 million, and acting for the management team of Weetabix on the acquisition of 60 per cent of its share capital by a major food company in China for an enterprise value of £1.2 billion.

Philip Way, Head of the Leeds Office of Mills & Reeve, said: “We were honoured to welcome the delegation to the office and to share the many things the region has to offer Chinese businesses looking to invest in Yorkshire.  We look forward to forging even greater links in the future.”

In the afternoon, the delegation attended a business roundtable hosted by the Institute of Directors at Grant Thornton’s office. A lively discussion between attendees took place about how to enhance the trade and investment relationship between China and the UK.