In the stunning Museum of Liverpool which opened less than 2 months ago there is a special exhibition on the story of Shanghai and Liverpool called "East meets West". These two great cities have been twinned since 1999 and they have many links. Two of the strongest are the Liverpool Chinese Business Network, a "professional and friendly platform for small and medium enterprises" and the Liverpool Chinese Business Association, a local advocacy group working with businesses and community organizations in Merseyside.
The Association's website records that there has been a Chinese community in Liverpool since 1866. A Chinese community newspaper has circulated in Liverpool since 1944 and a Chinese bank opened that same year. There are now several cultural and welfare institutions in the city
which come together to celebrate Chinese festivals. Probably the most important of those is the New Year. I was the Association's guest at this year's celebration. This picture shows me to the right in a floral dress standing next to my friend Catherine Lo who is one of the ablest solicitors who ever instructed me.
Catherine and I shared a platform in the seminar "Protecting Your IP in China" exactly 5 years ago. It was held in the boardroom of the magnificent Martin's Building in Water Street. It was attended by many distinguished guests including the Commercial Attache of the Chinese Embassy in London. My paper was an introduction to IP law in China which you can download here.
Membership of the Liverpool Chinese Business Network costs £195 and brings all sorts of benefits including discounts on accountancy and legal services which could help to offset the cost of the subscription. The next event takes place on 20 September 2011 at the China Palace in Berry Street. There will be a presentation on "Maximizing Your Website" by Rod Jones of Catalyst Co. followed by a buffet meal which on past form should be scrumptious. You can join the Network on-line.