Studying abroad remains vital ingredient of US foreign policy

Knowledge and understanding of other countries dispels stereotypes

Citing an old Chinese saying, personal experience and a handful of examples, US first lady Michelle Obama avidly encouraged students to study abroad in “a new era of citizen diplomacy” on Saturday.

“As the Chinese saying goes: It is better to travel 10,000 miles than to read 10,000 books,” she told more than 100 students when delivering a 15-minute speech at the Stanford Center at Peking University.

“We believe that relationships between nations aren’t just about relationships between governments or leaders. They’re about relationships between people, particularly our young people,” said the Harvard-educated lawyer from a working-class family.

Calling study abroad programs “a vital part of America’s foreign policy”, Obama said study abroad could help young people from different countries better cooperate with each other and know they all have a stake in each other’s success, and then to tackle their shared challenges.

“No country can confront them alone, the only way forward is together,” she said, citing issues including climate change and economic opportunities.

Wang Enge, president of Peking University, echoed Obama’s view, saying “mutual understanding is the very first step” for China to fully integrate into, and be fully accepted by, the world.

Wang also spoke of his anticipation of more US students coming to China, including Obama’s two teenage daughters joining Peking University, which triggered applause from the audience.

Christianna Madson, a 23-year-old US student at Peking University, said foreign students, representing their own country, could be a

cultural bridge to carry out citizen diplomacy.

“The more you know a country, the more you dispel the stereotypes,” said the student majoring in linguistics.

Madson, who learned Chinese for five years, said she planned to work in China to continue “building the bridge” as more foreign companies and organizations came to China and more Chinese enterprises kept expanding throughout the world.

According to the US first lady, China is currently the fifth most popular destination for Americans studying abroad.

“The US government actually supports more American students in China than in any other country in the world,” she said.

In 2009, US President Barack Obama announced the 100,000 Strong Initiative to encourage more US students to pursue studies in China.

China is the largest source of foreign students to US universities with more than 200,000 students studying there.

Zhang Yunqi, a sophomore at Peking University, said her willingness to study in the US became stronger after hearing the strong support from Michelle Obama.

“I believe it will be a trend for the US to be more open to Chinese students, with more scholarships provided,” she said.

Jia Qingguo, dean of the School of International Studies at Peking University, said the US also wants China to be more open.

“The differences between the two countries should not necessarily force them to be antagonistic to each other. Instead, it calls for understanding and cooperation,” he said.

Michelle Obama, who is on a weeklong maiden trip to China with her daughters and mother, has sought to promote education and youth empowerment since her arrival in Beijing on Thursday.

夏威夷房地产 – Real estate companies go where Chinese go

While the Chinese real estate industry is marching into the overseas market, its first choice is usually countries where there are many Chinese people, such as the US, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Malaysia and Singapore, International Finance News reported.

Chinese real estate enterprises investing in the overseas property market can date back to the year 2006, when Shanghai Industrial Group, joined by Ningbo United Group, Jinjiang International Group and Greenland Group, made a $1.346 billion investment of the “Baltic Pearl” project at Finland Bay in St. Petersburg, Russia.

The most recent investment was made on October 2012. Greenland Group and US Forest City Group started a joint venture and made an acquisition of the Brooklyn Atlantic Square real estate project. The total investment exceeded $5 billion and is the largest single real estate project in the last 20 years in New York. Greenland Group has successfully entered six countries including the US, South Korea and Australia.

Actually, top Chinese real estate enterprises have never missed any parties that explore the overseas market.

Since 2012, large real estate companies including Vantone Real Estate, Capital Group, China Railway Construction Corporation and SOHO have all had real estate projects or made investment plans in the overseas market.

“They would be ashamed to claim themselves as ‘first-tier companies’ if they do not explore the overseas market,” a real estate commentator joked.

In 2012, Dalian Wanda, China Oceanwide Holdings and Russian North Caucasus Resorts company signed an intent agreement with a total investment of $2.5-3 billion, planning to build large cultural, tourism and commercial facilities in Moscow, St. Petersburg and North Caucasus.

Earlier this year, China’s biggest real estate company, Vanke, entered the US by buying a 70 percent stake of Block 201 in Folsom Street, San Francisco from its real estate veteran developer, Tishman Speyer.

Another Chinese real estate giant, Country Garden, has invested five real estate projects in Johor Bahru in south Malaysia last year and now these projects are for sale. The thousands of houses built have been proved to be very popular and over 10 million yuan worth of houses have been sold. What is worth noticing is that 60 percent of the buyers are Chinese.

It is easier for those Chinese who want to make a property investment in a foreign country to choose large domestic enterprises. They are more familiar to the Chinese people and can be quickly identified with, Country Garden explained.

In fact, the first choice for most Chinese real estate enterprises who have marched into the overseas market is those countries where there are many Chinese residents, such as the US, Canada, Australia, Malaysia, Singapore and Japan.

In recent years, the number of buyers from the Chinese mainland has been soaring, leading to the heating-up of the overseas property market. In Europe and the US, many natives have complained that the influx of Chinese investors has driven up house prices.

Global real estate service provider Savills’ data show that buyers from the Chinese mainland have become the largest buying group of private residences in Singapore since 2010, beating the Malaysians and Indonesians.

“We go where Chinese people go,” Vanke President Yu Liang said straightforwardly.

Although some countries have rules that state a certain proportion of the houses must be sold to the natives, the large number of Chinese buyers has given Chinese real estate developers enough confidence for their overseas gold rush.

China on Track to Become World’s Largest Business Travel Market

China should surpass the U.S. as the world’s most dominant business travel market as early as 2016, according to Global Business Travel Association’s (GBTA) “BTI Outlook – China 2013 H2” report.

Despite weaker than expected business travel growth in H1 of 2013, the market did expand by 7.5 percent in Q2 of 2013 and is expected to register between 7 percent and 8 percent for the year. Still, the export sector continues to be impacted by weak economic performance in the U.S. and Europe, with export growth being driven mostly by intra-regional trade.

“Our forecast for Chinese business travel remains in line with our outlook published in the first half of 2013,” says Welf J. Ebeling, regional director, GBTA Asia. “Diminished trade activity to and from China, particularly in Europe and North America, has undermined the demand for long-haul business travel. We do, however, see annual growth pushing back towards twenty percent over the next few years.”

China is growing its business travel market faster than any other nation, and continues to close the gap on the U.S. as the largest business travel economy in the world. The surge in Chinese business travel spending has been driven by domestic and international outbound business travel, particularly among transient and group meetings and events travel.

Domestic travel continues to perform better than international outbound. GBTA expects this trend to continue with domestic travel spending forecasted to grow 14.3 percent in 2013 and another 17.2 percent in 2014. In comparison, international outbound business travel from China has slowed considerably over the last two years. Growth is still likely to reach 12.8 percent in 2013, followed by another 16.5 percent in 2014.

Produced by: Emerald Expositions
china, travel, global business, vacation,trade,US, europe,Asia,Chinese,

China on Track to Become World’s Largest Business Travel Market

China should surpass the U.S. as the world’s most dominant business travel market as early as 2016, according to Global Business Travel Association’s (GBTA) “BTI Outlook – China 2013 H2” report.

Despite weaker than expected business travel growth in H1 of 2013, the market did expand by 7.5 percent in Q2 of 2013 and is expected to register between 7 percent and 8 percent for the year. Still, the export sector continues to be impacted by weak economic performance in the U.S. and Europe, with export growth being driven mostly by intra-regional trade.

“Our forecast for Chinese business travel remains in line with our outlook published in the first half of 2013,” says Welf J. Ebeling, regional director, GBTA Asia. “Diminished trade activity to and from China, particularly in Europe and North America, has undermined the demand for long-haul business travel. We do, however, see annual growth pushing back towards twenty percent over the next few years.”

China is growing its business travel market faster than any other nation, and continues to close the gap on the U.S. as the largest business travel economy in the world. The surge in Chinese business travel spending has been driven by domestic and international outbound business travel, particularly among transient and group meetings and events travel.

Domestic travel continues to perform better than international outbound. GBTA expects this trend to continue with domestic travel spending forecasted to grow 14.3 percent in 2013 and another 17.2 percent in 2014. In comparison, international outbound business travel from China has slowed considerably over the last two years. Growth is still likely to reach 12.8 percent in 2013, followed by another 16.5 percent in 2014.

Produced by: Emerald Expositions
china, travel, global business, vacation,trade,US, europe,Asia,Chinese,

China on Track to Become World’s Largest Business Travel Market

China should surpass the U.S. as the world’s most dominant business travel market as early as 2016, according to Global Business Travel Association’s (GBTA) “BTI Outlook – China 2013 H2” report.Despite weaker than expected business travel growth in H1 of 2013, the market did expand by 7.5 percent in Q2 of 2013 and is expected to register between 7 percent and 8 percent for the year. Still, the export sector continues to be impacted by weak economic performance in the U.S. and Europe, with export growth being driven mostly by intra-regional trade.“Our forecast for Chinese business travel remains in line with our outlook published in the first half of 2013,” says Welf J. Ebeling, regional director, GBTA Asia. “Diminished trade activity to and from China, particularly in Europe and North America, has undermined the demand for long-haul business travel. We do, however, see annual growth pushing back towards twenty percent over the next few years.”

China is growing its business travel market faster than any other nation, and continues to close the gap on the U.S. as the largest business travel economy in the world. The surge in Chinese business travel spending has been driven by domestic and international outbound business travel, particularly among transient and group meetings and events travel.

Domestic travel continues to perform better than international outbound. GBTA expects this trend to continue with domestic travel spending forecasted to grow 14.3 percent in 2013 and another 17.2 percent in 2014. In comparison, international outbound business travel from China has slowed considerably over the last two years. Growth is still likely to reach 12.8 percent in 2013, followed by another 16.5 percent in 2014.

Produced by: Emerald Expositions
china, travel, global business, vacation,trade,US, europe,Asia,Chinese,