International Business School hosts the Honorable Fu Ziying, China’s Vice Minister of Commerce
In an engaging academic exchange on Sept. 23, the Honorable Fu Ziying, Vice Minister of Commerce for China, called for a cooperative approach towards tackling pressing global issues including poverty reduction, climate change, and bilateral trade. The most senior Chinese official to ever visit Brandeis, his rare visit was hosted by the Brandeis International Business School (IBS), one day prior to the start of G-20 meetings in Pittsburgh.
The Vice Minister and his delegation joined invited guests from across the Brandeis community who all share a common interest or expertise in China. Participants included undergraduate and graduate students, as well as IBS and undergraduate faculty members. George A. Ramirez, General Counsel to the Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development and Director of the Governor’s Development Cabinet, represented the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.
In welcoming the Vice Minister, IBS Dean Bruce Magid remarked: “Today’s dialogue could not come at a more important time in light of recent events in the global economy.” Magid sits on the board of the Massachusetts Office of International Trade and Investment (MOITI) which helped organize the event under the auspices of the Asia-Pacific Center for Economics and Business at IBS. MOITI pursues joint agreements with China in areas such as technology transfer and exchange, as well as promotion of two-way investment opportunities.
The Vice Minister’s address was followed by comments from professors Peter Petri and Gary Jefferson. Petri, the founding dean of IBS and Jefferson, chair of the Economics department, are both experts in the region. Petri acknowledged the importance of Chinese-U.S. cooperation and mutual accountability in achieving recovery from the global economic crisis. Jefferson shared compelling stories of Brandeis graduates from China whose research helped illustrate “the central role of the growing openness of the Chinese economy.”
Strong ties exist between China and Brandeis: 74 Chinese students are at IBS, the largest overseas representation. Jefferson collaborates with China's National Bureau of Statistics and as a Fulbright Scholar, he taught at Wuhan University, where he is now an Honorary Professor. In addition to leading the Asia-Pacific Center at the School, Petri is a Senior Fellow of the East-West Center in Honolulu, Hawaii, and a member of the Board of the U.S. Asia Pacific Council.
Magid expressed optimism the visit will lead to growing cooperation in the future: “We look forward to enhancing our relationship with China and exploring ways in which we can continue to collaborate through research projects and academic exchanges.”