Press release

Big wins for British businesses as Vice Premier Hu Chunhua visits

Deals between British and Chinese companies worth more than £500 million were announced today, during a visit to the UK by Chinese Vice Premier Hu Chunhua.

Members of EFD Conference sign commercial deals witnessed by Minister for Trade Policy, George Hollingbery MP.

Members of EFD Conference sign commercial deals witnessed by Minister for Trade Policy, George Hollingbery MP.

New business deals representing commercial signings, future contract commitments and MoUs, were agreed by British and Chinese companies as part of the 10th UK China Economic and Financial Dialogue (EFD) taking place in London this week.

The announcements were welcomed by the International Trade Secretary, Dr Liam Fox MP. In total, the deals are expected to deliver 175 new jobs in the UK, and deliver significant wins for the financial services, education, creative, food and agriculture and technology sectors.

Also announced today was a landmark market access agreement for British farmers, supported by the Department for International Trade (DIT) and the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra), which could put UK producers on track to export British beef to China by the end of 2019.

The agreement is expected to be worth an estimated £230 million in the first 5 years.

Secretary of State for International Trade, Liam Fox MP, said:

Britain is a key partner for Chinese trade and investment, and is one of China’s most important trading partners in Europe.

Today’s announcements show the breadth and depth of our trading relationship, the success UK firms are having in China, and the huge opportunity the Chinese market holds for British companies, particularly with regards to market access.

As an international economic department, DIT will continue to support UK businesses to increase their share in this growing market and build on our substantial export figures, as we progress towards leaving the EU.

The deals were signed and agreed at a ceremony at Mansion House, witnessed by Minister for Trade Policy, George Hollingbery MP.

An MoU was also signed between DIT and the National Development and Reform Commission of the People’s Republic of China on infrastructure cooperation in third countries.

This is a technical agreement that focusses on facilitating practical cooperation between UK and Chinese firms on projects overseas - ensuring that projects are delivered in line with the highest economic, environmental, social and financial standards in order to deliver sustainable, and inclusive development outcomes and deliver real opportunities for UK and international businesses.

Further information on commercial deals and MoUs:

Deals valued at £503 million have been agreed, creating 175 new jobs.

Financial Services

  • A new UK-China Fund, targeting £1 billion delivered in partnership by Charterhouse Capital, China Investment Corporation and HSBC to invest in UK SMEs with growth plans linked to China.

  • China Industrial Bank announced plans for a new representative office in London. The London Representative Office is expected to become an important base for the global initiatives of Industrial Bank.

  • MultiPass International and UnionPay International concluded an MoU to develop a digital payment platform to further expand issuance and acceptance of UnionPay branded cards outside mainland China. The new partnership is expected to create 105 new jobs over the next 3 years.

  • Redington’s Chinese subsidiary, Yuyuan Technology has signed commercial agreements with Taikang Life and Aviva-Cofco Life to provide interactive asset liability management tools.

  • OakNorth, Baillie Gifford and VCP Advisors have announced that they will set up a Wholly Foreign-Owned Enterprise (WFOE) in China.

  • China Banking Association, Shanghai Stock Exchange, China Investment Corporation (CIC), The Industrial Bank and CITIC Bank have announced they will be upgrading existing branches, opening representative offices or opening new branches in the UK.

  • Establishment of Heng’An Standard Life’s (HASL) pension insurance business, the first awarded to a foreign- invested business in China.

  • Schroders have been awarded Qualified Foreign Limited Partner (QFLP) licences and quotas.

  • XTX markets will become the first foreign non-bank market maker on the CFETS’s G10 market.


  • BBC Studios announced a wide-ranging partnership with Promotional Partners Worldwide (PPW), to bring British children’s cartoon ‘Hey Duggee’ to China . The agreement will see PPW act as the agent and licensee for Hey Duggee for Greater China – including mainland China, Taiwan, Hong Kong and Macau.

  • Cornwall’s The Lost Gardens of Heligan, one of the UK’s most well-known gardens, has announced a collaboration with Sheng lu Manor in Beijing to create a “Beijing Shenglu Heligan Garden’, to showcase the UK’s cultural, agronomic and horticulture expertise.

Energy and Built Environment

  • UK engineering consultancy company Arup and Shanghai Urban Construction Design & Research Institute (SUCDRI) have signed and MoU to cooperate on future infrastructure projects. The MoU follows a recently successful joint bid by the two organisations for the Shanghai Central Urban Area Drainage Masterplan project from Shanghai’s municipal government.

  • China National Petroleum Cooperation (CNPC), along with its joint venture partner INEOS, will invest in a New Energy Project in steam and electric power, at the Grangemouth facility. The plant will operational by 2022.

  • Hayward Tylor (HT) have signed an MoU agreement with Shinhoo Canned Motor Pumps (SH) to supply pumps for the energy and chemical industry.

  • Innovative Physics Limited (IPL) and CNNC Environmental Protection Co. (CEPC) have signed a collaboration framework agreement.


  • Wonderbly a UK publishing and education technology company, has signed an MoU for strategic cooperation with China’s biggest publishing group – Phoenix Publishing and Media Group to bring innovative personalised reading and learning to the Chinese market

  • Cranleigh School and Cogdel Education Group signed an MoU lasting 25 years denoting a partnership to set up Cranleigh’s bilingual school in China.

  • Thames Holdings Ltd and Shenzhen Fuzhida Management Ltd, signed a contract to form a joint venture to establish 50 nurseries across China in next 5 years.

  • Repton and Kingold have signed an MOU to set up Repton’s billingual schools initially in the Greater Bay Areas.


  • Micro Focus, one of the UK’s largest listed technology companies, announced a series of partnership deals with Chinese company H3C, marking its continued expansion into the Chinese market.

Food and Drink

  • Export wins for Hayman’s range of Gins; London Distillery; McCann Apples; Rooney Fish; Newby Tea and Baijiu Society.

Bilateral trade between the UK and China is worth a record £68.5 billion a year, the UK’s fifth-largest trading relationship.

Over the past decade UK exports to China have tripled, making China the UK’s sixth largest market globally with more than 10,000 UK businesses now selling goods and services to China.

Published 17 June 2019
Last updated 18 June 2019 + show all updates
  1. Removed line: - Fosun have acquired a majority stake in Tenax Capital to help build out their footprint in the European asset management space and to help bring European investors to China.

  2. First published.