news | 15 March 2016 | DFK Demetriou Trapezaris Limited

Fostering relationships in China

DFK International president Demetris Demetriou and executive director Martin Sharp are in China for the following days, carrying out a special mission. Demetris and Martin are visiting DFK member firms and other key contacts – to foster relationships and co-operation across the association. Martin and Demetris have kindly agreed to keep us updated on the progress of their trip.

Day 1

We arrived at Beijing Airport early evening and were kindly greeted by Wang Qi, a partner at Peking CPAs. Mr Hu Beihe’s son was also kind enough to drop us at our hotel - just in time for us to change for dinner. Hu Beihe, chief partner of Peking CPA, together with partners Wang Qi and Zhang Bo, hosted us and Andrew Ma from AMA CPA to a splendid Chinese banquet at a traditional Beijing restaurant. Our hosts discussed Peking CPA developments and the opportunity for closer co-operation between the DFK members in China. It was a really enjoyable evening, and we gained great insight into the latest developments of one of DFK’s newest members.

Day 2

We visited Beijing Zhongxuanyu CPA Co Ltd at their offices in Central Beijing where we had useful discussions with the partners Xu Jun and Renee Zhang. Ms Xu Jun explained how they had expanded their client base in recent years and had developed special skills in providing special audits for construction projects, especially for clients in the education and not-for-profit sectors. Over lunch, they discussed ways of increasing co-operation between DFK member firms and finding opportunities for building relationships with the new DFK member firms, Koehler Group and Peking CPAs. They concluded by arranging a meeting for us with Peking CPAs for the following day. In the afternoon, partners from Peking CPAs joined us on a visit to the Great Wall of China. On a crisp, clear blue-sky day, the Great Wall looked majestic and the tourists marvelled at the amazing and spectacular structure stretching out along he mountain peaks to distant horizons. The ride back to Beijing was followed by a traditional Peking duck dinner, hosted by Mr Hu and his partners. Over dinner, Demetris outlined his vision for DFK China and encouraged Mr Hu to find ways of working with the other DFK member firms to strengthen DFK’s presence in China so that the group could take its rightful place at the top of the international league.

Day 3

The third day of our visit to China began with a tour of the Forbidden city, which was kindly arranged by Peking CPAs with Ms Jean Liu acting as tour guide. Demetris, Andrew and Martin gathered at Tiananmen Square under the watchful gaze of Chairman Mao for the tour. Following the tour head to the offices of Peking CPAs for discussions with Mr Hu Baihe, accompanied by Ms Wang Qi and Ms Zhang Bo, partners in the firm. The meeting was very positive, with Mr Hu explaining that the firm had received a very warm welcome since joining DFK and had already participated in international business with DFK firms in Thailand (ASV Associates), United States (Geffen Mescher and Friedman) and Hong Kong (AMA and Sino-Bridge). The firm is very positive about their membership of DFK and were exploring way of strengthening the relationship further still. We also discussed plans for developing Chinese language versions of the DFK website and English language versions of the Peking CPA’s website. In a meeting facilitated by Demetris and Andrew Ma, partners from Beijing Zhongxuanyu, Ms Xu Jun and Renee Zhang, then met for the first time with Mr Hu, Ms Zhang Bo and Wang Qi. Their discussions were very positive and they talked about ways of working together to develop business and support clients. Following the meeting, we all met for a very cordial dinner hosted by Mr Ma at the Beijing branch of the Hong Kong Jockey Club.

Day 4

Today we flew from Beijing to the southern city of Guangzhou, another Chinese mega-city of astonishing size and modernity. In the afternoon we met the partners of the local branch of Peking CPAs - learning more about the capabilities and specialist skills of its 200-people strong office. They have particular skills in forensic accounting and their client base includes local and provincial government departments, as well as private sector companies ranging from construction to manufacturing. The firm has plan to expand its services to include financial training for clients and are keen to offer training in international services. For the latter, they would like to offer seminars to potential clients on investing abroad and are interested in inviting DFK members worldwide to participate in such opportunities. We agreed to investigate how DFK could help co-ordinate and support such initiatives. In the evening we enjoyed a meal of Guangzhou specialities, which was a real treat in this region known for the quality of its cuisine. Once again, we felt indebted to our hosts for the generosity and kindness, especially managing partner Mr Xie YuanBo, Ms Xia Ling (whose English is excellent we must add), Ms Lou Li and Ms Bao Yuling. We were most grateful to Shu Ting Xie (Sukie) for making all the arrangements and escorting us on our visit. We agreed that DFK is most fortunate to have such capable member firms in China and that we need to do more to increase interaction between our Chinese members and members worldwide so that we can further expand the level of international business between members in this huge market.

Weekend

Saturday was a ‘down-day’ from our meeting schedule, so we took the opportunity to visit Guilin, a city three hours northeast of Guangzhou by train in a region renowned for stunning limestone landscapes, especially along the Li River. After an early start and journey on the very comfortable high-speed train from Guangzhou, we travelled by local bus from Guilin to Yangshuo. The town is set on the Li Rover among towering limestone peaks, most of which were shrouded in heavy mist. Here wetook a short ride along the river on a raft before returning to Guilin and then back to Guangzhou.  It was a long day, but well worth it for the stunning vistas. On Sunday we took another high-speed train for the one-hour journey from Guangzhou to Shenzhen, where we were met by Gao Lu Lu from the Shenzhen office of Peking CPAs for our journey to the hotel. Like many we have met from Peking CPAs, Lu Lu speaks very good English, making our journey all the more straightforward. In the evening we met for dinner with colleagues from the DFK Asia-Pacific Executive Committee (Navin Patel, Ashutosh Pednekar, Pham The Hung, Stephen Bushel, Jamshid Medora, Zhang Bo, Leo Chan and Emma Tran) together with Lu Lu and Mr Xiangjun Li, Managing Partner of the Shenzhen office of Peking CPAs.

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