Looking back at 2023

2023, December 19
Looking back at 2023 19th December 2023
Dear members and friends of the BritCham community,
As we pen down our reflections on the closing chapter of 2023, it seems like only yesterday that we embarked on this journey together. In my fifth year at the Chamber, 2023 holds a special place as it marks my inaugural year leading the Chamber as the Managing Director. The year has been filled with uncertainties, much like the sentiments echoed in our recently launched , reflecting challenges while maintaining a resilient optimism that has guided us through the twists and turns of the past twelve months.
Advocacy: amplifying our voice
In 2023, our advocacy efforts reached unprecedented heights, defining it as a significant year for the British Chamber. Engaging on both the China and UK fronts, we solidified our position as the authentic independent voice for our members. The impact of our advocacy was eloquently demonstrated through our flagship reports—the  and  —where the collective strength of our voice resonated with governments, media and businesses. Furthermore, our regional ties flourished as we forged robust connections with BritCham Southwest and Guangdong. Noteworthy was the revival of our “” in June, providing a valuable opportunity to interface with members of Parliament and the Department for Business and Trade (DBT) back home. This engagement proved instrumental in comprehending the prevailing business sentiment in China, reinforcing our commitment to representing our members effectively.
Community: nurturing a resilient spirit
In the face of evolving dynamics, we remain steadfast in our commitment to community support. After 3 years of Covid-19 challenge, we witness a palpable sense of new energy revitalising our activities. Record-breaking events like the  and  underscored the resilience of our community pillar.
Our events, including the ,, UK Arts and Culture evening, , and more, have become touchstones for our community’s strength and vitality.
Knowledge: a credible ground for insights 
Our role as a knowledge hub has been growing and attracting a diverse audience. We emerged as the credible voice on the ground, fostering a platform for experts and insights exchange. Delegations from key industries and members’ visits added a global dimension to our knowledge ecosystem.
Network: strengthening key relationships
Collaborations flourished within our network, be it our strong ties with  this year with the UK as country of honour, partnerships with the China-Britain Business Council, the British Embassy and the Department for Business and Trade, or our expanded reach into the UK’s Institute of Directors in delivering the Board of Directors course. Our network extended further, supporting initiatives like BritCham Hong Kong’s annual summit, as well as close partnership with the British Chambers of Commerce on their ‘China month’ event.
Membership: growing together
Despite observing the departure of smaller companies from China, we have spent time building connections and re-engaging with companies within the business community in Beijing and beyond, in order to ensure a sustained and steady growth trajectory. A noteworthy testament to our outreach efforts is the significant milestones achieved in our social media presence, surpassing 10,000 followers on and 20,000 followers on WeChat. These achievements underscore the resonance we enjoy within the UK-China community, not only in China but also at home and across the globe.
New energy: secretariat and ExCo
All of our successes this year would have been impossible without our dedicated team of 6 full time staff and 3 interns, a blend of experienced hands and fresh perspectives, all contributing to the success of our endeavours. Our new Executive Committee, elected in June and led by our new Chair Julian Fisher, has been a driving force behind our accomplishments. The recent strategy day laid the groundwork for the next two years, and we eagerly anticipate sharing our plans for 2024.
Looking forward to 2024
As we bid farewell to 2023, we usher in a new year brimming with fresh strategies, renewed energy, and an exciting trajectory for member engagement. Together, let’s make 2024 a year of collective growthresilience, and success.
Merry Christmas, may your holidays be filled with warmth and good cheer!
I look forward to celebrating more successes across advocacy, knowledge and community with our member community in 2024.
All the best,
Managing Director
British Chamber of Commerce in China

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