Good evening, guests and friends: I’m truly honored and grateful to be here with all of you at this inaugural event of the Niagara Chinese Business Council.
Today, is a special day, as this represents the first time in Canada, if not in the world, where a chamber of commerce has set up a council for a Chinese Business Group. This has only been possible due to the creative and forward-thinking leadership of the Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce. As Chair of the NCBC, I’d like to extend my thanks to you, the GNCC, its members and the greater Niagara business community.
Canada is known around the world as a strong and free country, one that believes in liberty, enterprise, hard work and fair play. These values have enabled Canadians to build a prosperous society in a rugged environment from our Atlantic shores to the Pacific Ocean and to the Arctic Circle.
As Canadians, we are proud of our diversity and multiculturalism. Canada has been home to millions of newcomers. People raise families, enjoy life and fulfill dreams in this great country, with peace and hope. But, as citizens and immigrants, we should not forget our responsibilities to Canada, as J.F. Kennedy once said, “We should not ask what your country can do for you; ask what you can do for your country”.
Niagara is a great place to live. We are world-renowned for the natural beauty of the Falls, our wines, attractions, cuisine and more. Industries, agriculture and trade are well developed in our region. For years, the GNCC has been dedicated to the success of businesses and organizations in order to ensure the long-term prosperity of Niagara, our home.
The GNCC is now the third largest chamber of commerce in Ontario with over 1,600 members, and has been recognized with its highest level of distinction by the Chamber Accreditation Council of Canada. As an extension of its long efforts in supporting businesses and organizations, we’re now gathering here to celebrate the establishment of the newest council, the NCBC.
In Canada, the Chinese community is known for its distinct culture, language and history. For a long time, the Chinese communities in Canada as well as many other countries around the world, used to live isolated. We work hard and struggle to establish a new life, while we think and do business in our own way.
That is changing– starting right here, and right now, because we, the NCBC, working with GNCC, are committed to bridging the gap. To those who are doing business in Niagara, to those who are seeking jobs in Niagara, to those who are trading partners in Niagara, the NCBC is for you.
With the support from the GNCC, we will provide Niagara’s Chinese business community a forum for the exchange of business information and an avenue for fostering regional communication and promotion of trade and commerce.
NCBC will assist the GNCC’s mission of supporting the success of businesses in Niagara by establishing events and educational seminars for Chinese businesses and actively integrating them into Niagara’s business community.
We have a dream: that the people of Niagara work together making this region not only the best place to live, but also the best place to do business. Yes, we will face challenges. We will confront hardships. We also understand that an organization is only living as long as it is striving. Together, we will determine the course of Niagara and our business community for years to come.
To everyone in this room, you are witness and participant in this endeavor. Your voice, your hopes, and your dreams, will define our destiny. Your courage, your goodness, and your love will forever guide us along the way.
Chair, Niagara Chinese Business Council
Consultant, Investors Group