Research and study of ideologies of social and national emancipation and their application to conditions within imperialist society

On 6 July 2023, the China-Britain Business Council (CBBC) co-hosted a reception to mark the 70th anniversary of the “Icebreakers” held jointly with our partners at the China Council for the Promotion of International Trade (CCPIT) and the 48 Group Club (48GC). The event took place at the Diaoyutai State Guesthouse in Beijing with Vice President Han Zheng in attendance together with senior officials from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Commerce, and the International Division of the CPC and around 100 representatives from British and Chinese business.

Institute Patron Keith Bennett, who is Vice Chairman of the 48 Group Club, was among those in attendance.

China’s Vice President Han Zheng delivered opening remarks and read out a congratulatory letter on behalf of President Xi Jinping which reflected on the last 70 years since the original icebreaker mission, the growth of UK-China trade, and the importance of supporting engagement between both countries.

Vice President Han Zheng also affirmed the role played by the 48GC and CBBC in supporting the UK-China relationship and people-to-people exchanges. “The core of China-UK relations is mutual benefit and win-win situations”, he reflected.

Stephen Perry, Chair, 48GC, shared the story of his father’s (Jack Perry) first visit to China in 1953 during which he met with Chinese Premier Zhou Enlai and the icebreakers was born. The following year (1954), Jack returned with a delegation of 48 British companies which became known as the 48 Group and led to the formation of the CBBC in the 1980s. Stephen also reflected on the profound change China has been through over the last 70 years and his commitment to continuing to support engagement between the UK and China.

Report on the event on the website of the China-Britain Business Council.