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December 2009 / January 2010

MITA 373/03/2001



Time flies ...

I have the feeling that the summer holidays have just finished and now suddenly I realize
that Christmas and New year are approaching.

If I look back at the events we have organized since summer, I realize that it is true. The
Annual Dinner and Dance, the enterpreneurial panel, the visit of Jaap van Zweden and his
orchestra, the wine tasting at the Hollandse Club and finally we (and I) are preparing for the
end of year network drinks at my place, for which I invite all ADB members warmly.

Looking back, it will probably be for some people a year to better forget, the aftermath of
the credit crisis, the economies going down and all the consequences that may have brought.
We see now signals that Singapore (and other countries) are technically out of recession.
Jan de Vegt Adding the word technically in these reports makes me suspicious. What are these journalists
and analists trying to say? Technically we are out but effectively we are still in?

In my personal opinion it will take some more time before all economic indicators are pointing
in the right direction. I think we are recovering from a huge overreaction on the credit crisis,
companies as a reaction (or as a consequence) stopped orders, used-up their inventories and
now, as consumer spending is not going down that drastically, they have to restock. This gives
pressure in factories and transportation systems, as factories and transport systems were scaled
down due to the sudden lack of orders due to the credit crisis or maybe their credit position.
Could that be the part that leads us ‘technically’ out of recession, but not really?

China will play a leading role in global economic recovery, new opportunities will come up,
reason for us to get some further insights in China and business developments, which is the
theme of this combined December/January issue.

I do hope that we are overcoming the economic crisis, but I still have my doubts. Technically
we may be out, but if we are effectively out….., time will tell ....

On the contrary we see that the number of Dutch people in Singapore still has risen over
the last year and the ADB has recorded its largest number of (new) members in history.
This of course motivates us to take our tasks even further.

December is family month Sinterklaas, Christmas, New years Eve. Most events you spend
with family and friends, whether here in Singapore, in the Netherlands or any other place on
this Earth, therefor I wish you and your families Merry Christmas and a Happy and Healthy
New Year.

Enjoy the holidays and see you next year on our traditional ‘Nieuwjaars borrel’ on the
11th of January!

And in between the December festivities, do find the time to relax and read the ADB

Jan de Vegt

‘ The ADB provides opportunities for Dutch business people to meet, interact and share knowledge
by means of company visits, lectures, networking events and membership communications.

Marie-Hélène Ard Huisman Richard van der Frank Kuijsters Marleen Rutger Oudejans Hans Loth
Piederiet Werf Dieleman

Vol.19 • No. 10 • December 2009 / January 2010
A monthly publication of the
Association of Dutch Businessmen

ADB Board
Jan de Vegt President

Marie-Hélène Piederiet Honorary Secretary
Ard Huisman Honorary Treasurer
Richard van der Werf Member
Frank Kuijsters Member
Marleen Dieleman Member
Rutger Oudejans Member Prologue 1
Hans Loth Member
Selling Wine in Singapore 3
Editorial Committee
Frank Kuijsters, Chief Editor Business
Gene Kwee World Expo 2010 Shanghai China 4
Karin Gerbens What does a Chinese consumer want? 6
Lineke van Nederpelt
Richard Soemita
Rich, Richer, Richest: Wealth and Private banking 8
in China
Sara Caris
Willem Anne Hoekstra
Building business ties 10
My Chinese adventure: hosting meetings and 12
embracing naptime Sleeping in China?
Secretariat Under Chinese management 14
Lineke van Nederpelt
Mailing Address:
c/o 22 Camden Park, Singapore 299814
Bizz Agenda 15
Telephone: 9101 6201
email: Greenpage
Low Carbon City Initiative 16
Website : Travel
Email :
China beaches 18
Editorial contributions for the next issue may
be sent or handed over to the ADB Secretariat, Interview
before or on the day of the monthly ADB Ask4Me in Guangzhou 20
meeting. The contents of this magazine are partly
based on information received from third parties.
Doing business in China, an interview with 22
The Committee does not take responsibility Michiel Verhoeven
for the correctness of the articles.
Designed by Jennifer Phua The Little Red Book 25
Printed by Khoo Sun Printing Pte Ltd Tibet, or did the 13th Dalai Lama kowtow? 26
MITA 373/03/2001
Know Your Tax
Membership fee is S$ 100 per calendar year. China challenges Special Purpose Vehicles 28
For registration, please see the website www.
Membership is renewed automatically effective Column by...
the first month of the new calendar year. Richard Soemita
Make your cheque payable to “Assocation of Dutch Time to move to Paraguay? 29
Businessmen” and send to ADB, c/o 22 Camden
Park, Singapore 299814. Business News 30
Termination of membership must be received
by ADB Secretariat in writing before 1 January,
Event Agenda 32
otherwise you will be charged for the full amount
for the following calendar year. Conference Calendar 34
Please notify the ADB secretariat of any changes in
employer, (email) addresses or any other personal Embassy info 35
particulars that might be of interest to the ADB
administration. association info 35

Vol.19 • No. 10 • December 2009 / January 2010

Selling Wine in Singapore

Australia is for many years the market leader
in volume in the Singapore market and in retail
they have a 60% market share, followed by France
and much smaller volumes by Chile, USA, Italy and
New Zealand. The main reason of the Australian
success is the style of the Australian wines that
suit the Singapore palate and the value for money
aspect that these wines offer.
Also the proximity of Australia towards
Singapore helps a lot as many Singaporeans have
been there on holiday, send their kids to study
in Australia and the supermarkets are filled
In January 2008 the big dream of Arjen Blom with Australian produced products. That makes
came through, he started his own wine business Australia a trusted brand which helps in selling
in Singapore. The name of the company was their wines.
Wine Directions Pte Ltd and specializes in the In case you are not that familiar with the
import and distribution of boutique wines from Australian wine region and wine styles, you can
New Zealand. use the overview below as a guideline when
During the ADB wine talk on Tuesday November buying your Australian wines.
17, 2009 it became clear that there are a lot Arjen Blom
of differences between the Netherlands and Western Australia
Singapore on the preference and consumption • Margaret River: Chardonnay and Cabernet
of wines. Sauvignon
The Dutch have access to an abundant
South Australia
offering of wines from the European continent,
• Clare Valley: Riesling (dry style) and
with the French wines leading the pact. Often is
the preference for certain wines and wine styles
• Barossa: Shiraz, Shiraz and more Shiraz
passed on from generation to generation, as the
• Adelaide Hills: Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Gris
parents guide their children often in the first wine
and Pinot Noir
experiences. There is also a lot of exposure to the
• McLaren Vale: Chardonnay, Cabernet
European wines due to the holidays celebrated
Sauvignon, Shiraz
in the different wine producing countries. As
a result they hardly look for wines beyond the Victoria
European continent. • Yarra valley: Chardonnay en Pinot Noir
For the common Singaporean, wine is a • Heathcote: Viognier and Shiraz
reasonable new phenomenon. Wine started to • Macedon Ranges: Sparkling wines
become a part of their lifestyle only 15 years • Mornington Peninsula: Chardonnay and
ago. As there isn’t a wine tradition or legacy, Pinot Noir
they are open to wines from all over the world.
Singaporeans are also adventurous with regards Enjoy your next glass of wine.
trying new products and styles, which also For more information about Wine Directions More pictures on
reflects in their wine choice. visit their website

Wilco Alberda, Michael Krayenhoff, Marie Helene Piederiet, Mathieu Spros, Jurn Wendy Laheij, Lyshia Liauw, Piet Groen
Roderick Kasteel, Arnaud Schmutzer Terpstra, Marcel Krol

Vol.19 • No. 10 • December 2009 / January 2010

World Expo 2010 Shanghai China By Sara Caris

Next year the World Expo will be organized in global interest, concerns all nations, developed or
Shanghai, China. less developed, and their people. Being the first
The World Expo is a large-scale, global and World Exposition on the theme of city, Exposition
non-commercial exposition. It aims to promote 2010 will attract governments and people from
the exchange of ideas and the development across the world, focusing on the theme “Better
of the world’s economy, culture, science and City, Better Life.” For 6 months, participants
technology; and to allow nations to publicise will display urban civilisation to the full extent,
and showcase their achievements, as well as to exchange their experiences of urban development,
improve international relationships. disseminate advanced notions on cities and explore
The World Expo has seen three eras since the new approaches to human habitat, lifestyle and
first World expo in 1851 at the Chrystal Palace, working conditions in the new century. They will
London: learn how to create an eco-friendly society and
1. Industrialisation from 1851–1938: World maintain the sustainable development of human
expositions were focused on trade and the beings. Expo 2010 Shanghai China will centre
display of technological inventions. on innovation and interaction. Innovation is the
2. Cultural Exchange from 1939–1991 : World soul, while cultural interaction is an important
expositions became more strongly based on mission of the World Expositions.
a specific theme of cultural significance, and
began to address issues of humankind. Theme: Better City, Better life:
3. Nation Branding from 1992–present: Countries In 1800, only 2 percent of the global population
started to use World expositions more strongly lived in cities, but by 1950, the figure had risen
as a platform to improve their national images to 29 percent. In 2010 around 55 percent of the
through their pavilions total human population will live in the city. Despite
all its glories, there is no denying that the city
Expo 2010 Shanghai China will be an event to today, because of high-density living patterns,
explore the full potential of urban life in the 21st faces a series of challenges, such as spatial
century and a significant period in urban evolution. conflicts, cultural collisions, resource shortages
The prospect of future urban life, a subject of and environment degeneration. Without effective
controls, the unchecked expansion of cities will
aggravate these problems and consequently
erode the quality of urban life.
All the problems facing the city are believed
to have originated from the discords between man
and nature, between man and man, and between
spiritual and material aspects of life. It is also
maintained that such discord, if left unattended,
will inevitably lead to the decline of the quality
of life in cities and even the degeneration of
human civilisation.
It is in the face of such discord that Expo 2010
Shanghai China proposes the concept of a “City
of Harmony” responding to the appeal for “Better
City, Better Life.”
So far, more than 180 countries and 34
international organisations have confirmed their
participation in World Expo 2010, with 70 million
visitors expected over 6 months. The Netherlands
and Singapore have their own pavilion.
The Dutch pavilion (4.000 m2), designed by
architect/artist John Körmeling, is called ‘Happy
Street’. It’s an entire street in the shape of the
number eight, an auspicious number in Chinese
culture. Visitors to the pavilion stroll along 20
houses in different styles that represent Dutch
architectural tradition, including designs by
Gerrit Rietveld and Jan Wils.

Vol.19 • No. 10 • December 2009 / January 2010

the pavilion’s
architecture, one
which evokes images of a
musical box. It forms an orchestra
of elements and a symphony for the senses
– from the choreography of the plaza’s water
fountain to the rhythm of fenestrations on the
With the theme ‘Better city, better life’ façade.
Expo organisers have challenged participants Pictures and exhibits of Singapore adorn
to generate ideas for liveable cities in the 21st the way to the atrium space and main hall of
century. As a largely urbanised and densely the first floor, where visitors will enjoy various
populated country, the Netherlands has much to activities; taking in performances right up to
offer in this regard. The Dutch pavilion promotes the expanse of the second floor’s column-free
sustainability, environment, and corporate open space. Topping off Singapore’s reputation
social responsibility. It shows, for instance, the as a much-admired garden city is the rooftop’s
innovative ways in which Holland deals with A Garden in the Sky. The pavilion’s four columns
space, energy and water. stand as symbols of the four main races plus their
The Singapore pavilion (3.000 m2) designed foreign guests, supporting the entire structural
by Kay Ngee Tan Architects will showcase system on a floor comprised of different shapes
Singapore’s achievements in urban planning, water and sizes. This demonstrates how while some
technology and environmental services, while of the Singaporean may come from elsewhere,
promoting closer relations between the people they are all able to live, work and play together
of China and Singapore. The pavilion will also in perfect harmony while sharing the same
highlight Singapore’s ability to offer a high-quality common ground.
and integrated environment to live, work and
play within a compact area through sustainable When: May 1st to October 31st 2010
planning and development. Where: Waterfront of the Huangpu River
The Singapore Pavilion is to be called between Nanpu Bridge and Lupu Bridge
Urban Symphony. The theme is best expressed in More information:


12A Jln Samulun • Singapore 629131 • Tel : +65 6591 5288 • Fax : +65 6591 5289 • •

Vol.19 • No. 10 • December 2009 / January 2010

What does a Chinese consumer want?

By Frank Kuijsters

Crisis or not, the Chinese economy continues to prosperity of the average Chinese in the coming
grow. The inhabitants of the People’s Republic years continues to rise rapidly. The gross national
are increasingly affluent. It is a dream market product is still growing, global crisis or not.
for many companies. But how do you get solid Companies from around the world closely watch
foothold? the Chinese consumers finding increasing financial
The Chinese today is not the same as him of prosperity.
a few years ago. The living room of a family in a A few years ago DVD players, iPods, watches
town like Shaoxing, in the east of the country, and mobile phones were enthusiastically welcomed
can now look just like those of a middle class and sold like hot cakes. But Chinese consumers
family from Alkmaar or Oss. are with their time. An overdose of choice and
Today, the modern Chinese will be able to a growing welfare standard makes him more
meet all his basic needs, and perhaps looks like demanding and less satisfied. A proper strategy
the Westerner of a few generations ago. Yet he that is responsive to the wishes of modern
is looking for the luxury and comfort to match Chinese is the key to business success in China.
his new standard of living. It appears that the
But what are some 1.3 billion Chinese people
today waiting for? A concrete top ten popular
products or services is impossible to compile. But
here some recommendations to get the modern
Chinese onto your side.
First: Focus on the “smaller” cities like
Chengdu and Xiamen. Research indicates these
places, where the average population still varies
from 2 to 12 million people, as the most fertile
markets for the moment. The population is not
primarily critical, but the economic development,
purchasing power and social status of the residents
determine the attractiveness of the metropolis in
the making.

Vol.19 • No. 10 • December 2009 / January 2010

Second: The Chinese over 40 years old are as a

customer much less interesting than those in their
twenties and thirties. The reforms introduced by Selfish consumers
Deng Xiaoping in the early eighties marked the
beginning of the new China. The Chinese in their Researchers have identified eight different archetypes of the
twenties and thirties have grown up in a market Chinese consumers in the 21st century. The detailed profiles can be
oriented China and are thus more open to foreign used with a product to match consumer preferences.
influence and innovations. Moreover, they have
considerably more disposable income than older 1. Egoists (21.3%)
compatriots. People over 30, high income, averse to traditional values,
Third: Invest in building a relationship with eccentric, the early adopters.
the Chinese consumer. Loyalty in Chinese goes 2. Hedonists (15.1%)
far, especially in their choice of brands. But a Average income, attracted by anything new and trendy,
brand must invest heavily to win the confidence of especially out on pleasure and comfort.
Chinese people. Branding is therefore crucial. That
effort is often rewarded, the chances are that a 3. Traditional maximalists (12%)
Chinese woman who is satisfied with the cream of Thirties, low incomes, combined with a traditional mind
L’Oreal, will continue to buy L’Oreal for the rest up consumerism, status oriented, but their buying behavior
of her life. For international brands there is a big influenced by traditional beliefs.
challenge, because Chinese are naturally attached
to home-grown products. Skepticism about import 4. Minimalist (11.8%)
products is particularly with older, more traditional Predominantly women, risk-and little interest in new technology
Chinese. Yet the young, modern Chinese is very or innovation. Looking for the best value for money. Limit their
explicitly looking for Western brands. consumption to basic necessities.
Fourth: Choose the right sales channel.
5. Modern performers (11.5%)
Modern Chinese are fond of shopping malls and
The serious consumer looking for the best quality and would be
hypermarkets, huge supermarkets where besides
willing to pay more. Less sensitive trend, focus on career.
food, things like clothing and electronics are sold.
The French Carrefour recently opened its 135th 6. Progressive maximalists (11.1%)
store, the American Wal-Mart has opened this Mostly men, average age 34 years, the richest little interested
year 100 Shops. Whether a Chinese goes for his in environmental or social issues, especially from its own success
shopping to a mall, Wal-Mart, grocery store or uses and showing them.
the internet, all depends on his domicile. Smaller
cities don’t always have a hypermarket, just like 7. Traditionalists (9.4%)
big cities virtually have no small neighborhood The typical small businessman, low price-conscious, especially
supermarkets anymore. Behind sale on the Internet for the long term. Family life and provide a good stable home
is a great exclamation mark: the rise of Chinese and determine consumer attitudes.
online hoppers is unprecedented. Last year their
8. Conformists (7.9%)
number grew by over 137 percent, representing
a flow of nearly 18 billion U.S. dollars. 40 +, mostly women, great value to social and environmental rules,
Finally: Think of the environment. Chinese little interest in trends or status.
consumers are increasingly environmentally
conscious. Modern Chinese have already expressed
a preference for sustainable business. Source: Roland Berger Strategy Consultants


Vol.19 • No. 10 • December 2009 / January 2010

Rich, Richer, Richest: Wealth and

Private banking in China
By Willem Anne Hoekstra and Frank Kuijsters

Wang Chuanfu Zhang Yin Xu Rongmao Huang Guangyu

The number of Chinese US$ millionaires is expected to cross 450,000 by the end of the year, with
their total assets under management hitting $1.73 trillion. Despite the global economic downturn,
their wealth still expanded this year, creating growing opportunities for Private Bankers. In comparison:
it will take another 4 years for the market in the rest of the world to regain 2007 levels. The global
wealth dropped 11.7 percent last year to $92.4 trillion.
China is arguably the most explosive wealth market in the world, as rising income and a high
savings rate are likely to continue. The number of millionaires in China is expected to reach 800,000
over the next four years.
Wealth is very concentrated. Half of it is owned by only about 0.1% of the households, in particular
in the regions Guangdong, Beijing, Shanghai and other coastal provinces. Although these millionaires
saw growth, the total wealth in the country fell by 2.3 percent to $3.41 trillion last year, as the country
witnessed volatile stock markets, plunging exports and fluctuating property prices throughout the crisis.
Competition to service these customers grows. In 2007, foreign banking giants like HSBC, Citibank
and BNP Paribas, have set up private banking operations.
Of the local banks, Bank of China was the first Chinese bank to launch private banking business. It has
now established private banking centres in 15 regions and last year bought the Geneva-based Heritage
Fund Management. The Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, the nation’s largest bank by assets
and retail network, will expand its private banking network from the current five cities to 10, to cover
other economic regions like Yangtze River Delta, Pearl River Delta and central China.

The 2009 - list of richest people in China counts 130 dollar-miljardairs. In 2004
there were only 3 multimillionaires. The number 1 of 2009 is Wang Chuanfu, executive of

BYD (electric cars). He has 5.1 billion dollar. Last year he was number 103 on the list, with
only 880 million dollar.
The investment of the American investor Warren Buffet has been good for his wallet.
The richest man of 2008, Huang Guangyu, founder and then boss of white goods shops
Gome, was with 6.3 billion dollar richer, but he is currently in prison and has disappeared
from the list of richest people in China.
The top ten richest are together worth 45.3 billion dollar, last year that was 40.1

billion. Only three of the top ten of last year are back in the list. In 2004 the top ten had
together “only” 7.9 billion.
This year 6 out of 10 are in real estate developers. Last year only 4 were in real estate.
If we look at the top 100 richest people in China, you could be in 2004 on the list if
you had 100 million dollar, in 2009 you need that to be in the top thousand. Last year you
needed at least 1 billion dollar to be in the top 100.
The economical crises had only a slight impact on the total.

Peking has at least 143.000 euro millionaires – 9 out of 1.000 inhabitants and almost
9.000 who have more than 10 million euro. Shanghai’s in China’s second biggest city with
116.000 millionaires – 6 out of 1.000 inhabitants and almost 7.000 who have more than
10 million euro.

Vol.19 • No. 10 • December 2009 / January 2010

Name Billions ($) Company Industry

1 Wang Chuanfu 5.1 BYD Electric cars, batteries
2 Zhang Yin 4.9 Nine Dragons Paper Paper
3 Xu Rongmao 4.7 Shimao Real estate
4 Yang Huiyan 4.6 Country Garden Real estate
5 Huang Wei & Li Ping 4.4 Sinhoo Real estate and finance
5 Liu Yongxing 4.4 East Hope Group Chemicals, aluminium
5 Lu Zhiqiang 4.4 Fanhai Real estate and finance
5 Zhu Jianlin 4.4 Hoson Development Real estate
9 Wang Jianlin 4.3 Wanda Group Real estate
10 Liu Zhongtian 4.1 Zhongwang Group Aluminium, plastics
10 Yan Bin 4.1 Reingwood Group Real estate, mining
10 Zhang Jindong 4.1 Suning Retail, real estate
13 Lv Xiangyang 4.0 Guangzhou Young Cars, gsm, batteries, mining
13 Zong Qinghou 4.0 Wahaha Textile, beverages
15 Chen Fashu 3.7 Xinhuadu Ind. Group Retail, gold and pharmaceutical
16 Ma Huateng 3.6 Tencent Gsm and online activities
17 Chen Lihua 3.4 Fu Wah International Real estate
17 He Xiangjian 3.4 Midea Group Household appliances
17 Huang Guangyu 3.4 Pengrun Investment Retail, real estate, private equity
20 Liang Wen’gen 3.2 Sany Heavy Industry Industrial machineries
20 Liu Yonghao 3.2 New Hope Group Real estate, chemistry, nutrition
22 Chen Zhuolin 3.1 Agile Property Real estate
22 Liu Canglong & Liu Hailong 3.1 Hongda Group Chemistry, metal and real estate
22 Lu Guangqui 3.1 Wanxiang Group Car parts, real estate
22 Xiuli Hawken 3.1 Renhe Group Real estate
Source: Huron Report of Rupert Hoogewerf

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Building business ties By Gene Kwee

Singapore is known for its aptitude and its

continuous drive to strive for further enhancements
to enable growth. As an example, the government
promotes Mandarin teaching to help business
ties. From a Singapore perspective, the ties are
not just commercial, but strategic.
In addition, investments from China and
Singapore in their respective territories are
actively promoted through the Bilateral Council for
the Promotion of Investments (established since
18 May 2005). The objectives are threefold:
1. to outline China’s investment environment
and policies on foreign investment;
2. to help Singaporean enterprises in China avoid
difficulties and create a favorable business
environment for them;
China has been Singapore’s top foreign investment 3. t o f a c i l i t a t e C h i n e s e i n v e s t m e n t i n
destination for the last few years. Bilateral trade Singapore.
has been growing rapidly, making Singapore one As a testimony of the strong belief of continuous
of the largest investors in China since the first building of the strong foundations of trade
half of 2000. The entry of China into the WTO between the two countries, the China Council
and the start of the China-Asean tariff reduction (China-Singapore Council for the Promotion of
plan have further opened up the Chinese market. Investment) is chaired by the Chinese Minister
This provides more opportunities for Singapore of Commerce and made up of relative bodies
to improve its bilateral trade relationship with directly under the State Council of China and
China. the Embassy of the People’s Republic of China
Bilateral trade between Singapore and China has in the Republic of Singapore (the Economic and
been flourishing since the two countries established
diplomatic relations in 1990. The relationship
is further strengthened by frequent high-level
visit. Tellingly, when Chinese president Hu Jintao
arrived in Singapore for a state visit recently in
November 2009, he spoke of the two nations’ “close
friendship” and “cultural ties”. In response the
Singapore’s foreign ministry reflected on the close
friendship and strong ties between Singapore and
China and the upcoming event as to celebrate 20
years of diplomatic relations next year”.

Foundations of the business ties

As mentioned earlier, it was not until 1990 that
Singapore opened relations with the People’s
Republic of China, which it had accused of
supporting Communist movements in neighboring
Malaysia, Indonesia and elsewhere in Southeast
Asia. Many ethnic Chinese Singaporeans descend
from people who fled civil war and Communist
rule in the 20th century. Today the circumstances
have changed. Singapore and its neighbor countries
are eager to build trade ties with China, but are
clear that there is no intention of becoming vassal President Hu speaking at the Singapore Chinese
states. Chamber of Commerce & Industry

Vol.19 • No. 10 • December 2009 / January 2010

Commercial Counsellor’s Office). The Singapore

Council (Singapore-China Council for the Promotion
of Investment) is chaired by the Singaporean
Minister of Trade and Industry and made up of
relative bodies of Singaporean Government and
the Singapore Embassy in Beijing (Commercial
A Secretariat has been established in both
councils for daily contact. A senior official from the
Department of Foreign Investment Administration
of the Chinese Ministry of Commerce will be
appointed the Secretary-General of the China
Council. A senior official from the International
Business Development Directorate of the
Singaporean Ministry of Trade and Industry will
be appointed the Secretary-General of the
Singapore Council.
With such an impressive backing it is not
surprising that the mission of promoting, soliciting
of bilateral investments and solving common
investment problems and investors concerns
through bilateral coordination and cooperation has
proven to be very successful. To ensure a sustained
level of success, a joint conference is typically
held twice a year to allow for an exchange of views It is then no surprise that China is one of
on bilateral investment. The conference is held in Singapore’s largest trading partners. Recent
China and Singapore alternately. In principle, it developments such as the “flagship projects”
will be chaired by chairmen from both councils. in bilateral cooperation, including the Suzhou
When the chairmen cannot attend the conference, Industrial Park and Tianjin Eco-City projects,
it can be chaired by vice ministers supervising have seen remarkable achievements and the
the investment affairs with the authority of the implementation of the free trade arrangement
chairmen. between China and Singapore has helped raise
Another factor that is likely to lead to further the level of the economic cooperation between
growth in trade between the two countries is the two countries.
the fact that Singapore and China have signed The business circles of Singapore have also
a comprehensive free trade agreement (FTA), voiced their belief that a stable and prosperous
which has been implemented on 1 January 2009. China would bring benefits to the region and
Highlights of the FTA: the world as a whole. They also expressed the
• 85% of Singapore’s exports to China will be willingness to continue to play an active role in
duty-free, with another 10% slated to be advancing mutually beneficial cooperation and
duty-free by 2010. bilateral ties between Singapore and China.
• All of China’s exports to Singapore will be Up until now, Singapore has made investments
duty-free. worth more than $60 billion in China.
• Singapore and China businesses will get Looking at the intentions and the strong
preferential access to the private healthcare support from the government it can only be
and business services sectors. expected that the foundations are not likely to
• China businesses will get preferential access be eroded. During the last visit of President Hu
to Singapore’s private education industry. a remark was made that China and Singapore
• Greater flexibility for businessmen and should strive to create new opportunities for
professionals to travel and work in both bilateral cooperation in an effort to realize
countries. economic recovery at an early date and calling
for the two nations to work together to create
Recent Performance an even brighter future. This all exudes a strong
Singapore’s trade with China has seen a tremendous belief of the mutual benefit that the success
growth over the last decades to over $90 billion of the China-Singapore trade and economic
last year compared to the $7.6 billion in 1994. cooperation will bring to both countries.

Vol.19 • No. 10 • December 2009 / January 2010

My Chinese adventure: hosting meetings

and embracing naptime Sleeping in China?
By Koert Breebaart
Shenzhen - the Pearl above Hong
“The client is based in Shenzhen” an American
voice told me over the phone. I had never heard of
that city in my life. Now I do. Here are some data
points for you: Shenzhen is 1 hour north of Hong
Kong and connected through the MRT system. The
city has 14 million inhabitants, with an average
age of 30! Only 20 years back it was a small fishing
village, until Deng Xiaoping declared Shenzhen to
be a Special Economical Zone. Now it is home to
the largest companies in the world, coming with
modern skyscrapers, luxurious hotels, complex
infrastructure and a lot of HDB’s, following
Singapore example. The one thing you directly
notice when driving through Shenzhen is the chaos
on the roads. Any ride turns into a rollercoaster. A
Singaporean would get bended toes and lowered
pants by the jaywalkers, the ghost riders, the
tricycles on the highway and the unattended
It is Monday afternoon. I just arrived in China traffic lights. Several times I’ve said farewell to
and I enjoyed lunch with my new colleagues. the world in the back of a taxi or bus.
Back at my desk it is dark and you can hear The main difference with cities like Hong
a pin dropping on the floor where 80 people Kong and Shanghai is that Shenzhen is considered
work. It feels unreal and I decide to check out mainland China and everything is in Chinese:
the other floors and come to the conclusion that conversations, menus, signs, telephone operators,
this Chinese multinational company sleeps, but you name it… The city is not really catered for
only for a little while a day. westerners, but the good thing is, once you get
through it, Shenzhen offers the best restaurants
Dutch Chinese resident with a mission in China, is extremely affordable and has a
As a management consultant for Accenture in flamboyant nightlife.
Singapore I help clients, in general the top 500
multinationals, to define their strategy and take Learning on the job
responsibility for organizational change and Commuting up and down Shenzhen, Monday to
business transformation. For the past 9 months I was Friday from Singapore was a dragon travel. It
leading a strategic project for a prominent Chinese took me 6-8 hours door-to-door, depending on
client, one of the most admired companies in the luck and availability of transportation means,
world. Their mission is ambitious: become a leading involving, taxi, plane, boat and limousine service.
player in the European market. Professionally I had During the week I stayed in the impeccable
never faced such a great challenge before, leading Pavilion Hotel.
such a change program in unknown territory. And In an over-simplistic way, you could say my
to embark on this endeavor I first had to become a work consists of preparing and hosting meetings.
Chinese resident and learn basic Mandarin (which Two aspects stood out:
is a whole other story…!). The headquarter where I - First, the dynamics of the meetings: organize
worked is impressive: spacious, modern, surrounded a meeting in China with 2 or 3 people and you
by small lakes, lanes and bridges. Nothing is left to will find yourself presenting to an audience of
the impression that this company is not going to 30 people. The unwritten rule is that anyone
conquer the world. Something different compared invited can invite others at their judgment or
to ‘Industry Park Vianen’. Inside their gates over interest. So when the Accenture consultants
40.000 people live and work. come and speak everybody wants to listen

Vol.19 • No. 10 • December 2009 / January 2010

in. After the meeting people just disappear,

normally without giving any feedback.
- And second, the people that attend the
meeting: Chinese people. I found some good
insight in differences between cultures on After a close look at
this picture I understood there was some work
to be done. Grey is the Chinese, white the
Dutch. This definitely helped me being more
effective in my management style!
Also a matter of learning through practice:
Festive celebrations. A round table, plenty of
food and Chinese red wine are the ingredients of
Chinese New Year celebrations. You go around, yell Sometimes there was ‘French fried’, but more
“Gan Bei” to anyone, you laugh loudly, you slam often not. And then after lunch, the curtains close,
the red wine away and then you yell something like the stretchers come out of under the desk, the
“Happy Ox”. After some practice a lot of fun. lights go off, the phones go on mute and everybody
Lunchtime was my favorite. We were given goes to sleep. I can assure you after nine hectic
special pink ‘Tunch’ vouchers that we could months: A wonderful oasis in the midst of turbulent
exchange for food in the canteen. The food was meetings!
rather good, very Chinese style. The Chinese word Although the life experience gained working
for food is ‘fan’, which also translates to rice. So in China was fantastic, I am glad to be back in
there is rice mornings, midday’s and evenings. Singapore.

Vol.19 • No. 10 • December 2009 / January 2010

Under Chinese management

By Frank Kuijsters

Is there something like a Chinese management Confucianism is therefore, deliberately or

style? not, major impact on the management of Chinese
Although the communist Mao Zedong Confucianism enterprises. The Journal of Management Studies
rejected as reactionary and feudal, the influence in an article in 2007 concluded that the influence
of the Chinese philosopher’s thoughts and actions of Confucius on Chinese Management wasn’t
of the population never completely disappeared. estimated for a long time on its true value.
Indeed, even during the Cultural Revolution, when The faster China’s economy develops, the
everything that smacked of the old China had to more the Chinese seem to refer to their history
be destroyed, Confucius did affect the thinking and important figures of the past. The Chinese
and acting of the population. You can’t just erase economic miracle is leading to a renaissance of
25 centuries. the ancient Chinese values. At several schools
Confucius is educated again.
The teachings of Confucius (551-479 BC) is known “Zesjes” Culture
as the cultural foundation of China. He is described Anyone who has done business in China will
as “China’s first master” and has followers in East recognize: the way to a decision or agreement
Asia. Confucius’ teachings originally transmitted is long and full of bumps (see box ‘10 tips’).
only orally, but after his death by his students in But if a decision has been taken, it also carried
writing. More than 1000 years long, to the early with dizzying speed, without reserve or wailing
twentieth century, Chinese students were required afterwards.
to the wisdom and teachings of Confucius and It is not only a consequence of the top-down,
learned by heart at any time could cancel out authoritarian management culture, but it is also
loud. The teachings in the Chinese psyche as such due to the Confucian work ethic. One can accuse
deep scars left as the Judeo-Christian morality the Chinese of many, but they do not lay down a
in the western world. “zesjes” culture. In addition, both employee and

Vol.19 • No. 10 • December 2009 / January 2010

manager much more than we are accustomed

to do their best for the groups interest.
These success factors result directly from the Unwavering business principles in China
thought of Confucius. More and more business
schools have therefore placed Confucianism in 1. Business Friends - Guanxi, or personal relationships are crucial.
their curriculum. Meanwhile the Chinese prove Never underestimate the importance of building a personal
that their ancient philosophical mentor can be relationship with your business partners.
perfectly combined with western management
techniques: Confucius has become an export 2. Respect - Chinese build a relationship with people like
product. Worldwide, there are already 210 themselves in an honorable way to show respect to others.
Confucius Institutes in 64 countries including 3. Seniority - All relationships are in Chinese eyes by definition
one in The Hague. wrong, why it is important to show respect for age, seniority
and background.
The doctrine of the master
Of course the practice is often more stubborn 4. Authoritarian - Managers are usually directively, a reflection of
than the philosophy. The abuses in some Chinese the Confucian concept of hierarchical organization of society.
factories are similar to those described by Charles 5. Meaning - In exchange for loyalty, is the manager expected to
Dickens than to the lofty musings of Confucius. show understanding and interest in all aspects of the life of
Mao would be turning over in his tomb at the an employee.
Square of Heavenly Peace.
Yet the influence of Confucius is difficult 6. Politics - There are often close links between the senior
to overestimate. Central to his philosophical management of an enterprise and local party officials.
principles are relationships, universal virtues 7. Face Loss - It is important for people not to lose their faces
and work ethic. Although they do not relate to in the presence of their group. Respect seniority always and
organizations or businesses, they play in adapted never let differences of opinion appear.
form an important role. The loyalty between king
and citizen is translated into such an employer 8. Favors - Do as many others a favor, debt should ever be
has the responsibility for his employee, who in repaid.
exchange faithful and is looking for his patron.
9. Business Card - Business cards must be presented formally
The Confucian manager attaches a great
at the start of a meeting. Treat it with respect card, the card
importance on building relationships. He claims
is at that moment the man / woman.
the group interests over individual performance.
In some ways the Confucian ethical principles 10. Patience - Meetings often last long and seemingly have no clear
do surprisingly modern feel. The ideas of the objective. Often such meeting not more than one step in building
American management guru Peter Drucker are a relationship. The purpose of the meeting is more than the
similar to that of Confucius. And values like relationship to move forward than to a specific business goal.
hard work, dedication and loyalty make us think
again about Protestantism.

Bizz Agenda

AESER 2009 (Asia-Pacific Embedded Systems Singapore International Arbitration

Education and Research Conference) Forum 2010
14-15 December 2009 21-22 January 2010
Nanyang Technological University, Singapore Raffles City Convention Centre, Singapore

World Grains Trade Summit World Pharma Outlook Asia 2010

20 January 2010 25 January 2010
The Ritz-Carlton Millenia Singapore - Grand Ballroom, Level 1 Marina Mandarin Hotel, Singapore

Vol.19 • No. 10 • December 2009 / January 2010
Green Page

Low Carbon City Initiative

1. Why is the initiative needed? Energy consumption in cities is increasing
China is the most populous country in the world. rapidly. The energy consumption increase in
Its economy is also one of the fastest growing, China’s cities does not only result from rapid
with annual average GDP growth rates settling industrialization, but also from the buildings and
in at 9% to 10% over recent decades. The steady transportation sectors. There are 17 billion m2 of
growth has attracted global attention for both buildings in China’s urban areas, with 1 billion m2
outstanding economic figures and the potential added each year. China’s vehicle population is also
environmental impacts resulting from the massive growing quickly, having surpassed 150 million by
increase in energy consumption. Due to limited June 2007. In addition, urban energy consumption
resources and environmental capacity at home per capita is estimated to be three times higher
and abroad, China is impelled to explore a path than that of rural areas. The annual migration of
of sustainable development, which will contribute approximately 10 million people from rural areas
to development and security at national and to urban centers projects a scenario of continued
international levels. Cities will play an important and rapid increase in urban energy consumption.
role in this challenge, because most energy is Energy consumption causes serious
consumed in cities. In order to protect people environmental problems in cities. Vehicle
and nature from dangerous environmental threats, emissions remain the biggest source of air
sustainable development of China’s growing cities pollution in cities. The pollution is the result of
must become a top priority. factors such as inappropriate urban planning,
Trend towards rapid urbanization. The insufficient public transportation investment,
number of cities in China has increased from 193 in growing vehicle numbers and low gas emission
1978 to 661 in 2005, among which 54 are so-called control standards.
mega-cities and 84 are large cities, compared to, The Chinese government attaches great
respectively, 13 and 27 in 1978. By the end of 2006, importance to climate change and is creating a
the urbanization rate in China was about 43.6% series of policies and measures to address the
of the population. This rate is rapidly increasing, issue. One of the government’s initiatives to
with 75% of the population estimated to live in reduce the country’s contribution to climate
cities by 2050. change was to establish a national target to
Heavy industrialization is on the rise. Energy decrease energy intensity by 20% by 2010. In a
consumption in heavy industries - such as iron move to help China achieve this target, and to
and steel, chemicals and energy - accounts for facilitate national and international low carbon
70% of the total in the industrial sector, and is development, WWF - with the support of local and
still growing at a fast pace. Industries themselves global partners - will implement a Low Carbon City
represent 70% of China’s total energy consumption. Initiative (LCCI) in China in the next 5 years.
Heavy industry provides the goods and products
which are increasingly consumed in cities. 2. What is the initiative about?
LCCI will explore low carbon development
models in different cities, working to improve
Conceptual Framework and Key Drivers for the Low Carbon City Initiative
energy efficiency in industry, construction and
Chinese policy work: transportation sectors. It will also address the
Central/Provincial Government Support
development of renewable energy and ensure that
International and International and other cities in China can learn from successful
national public work: national B&I:
Export support of EE and Multi-national companies experiences and replicate them.
RE industry investment
City Planning
LCCI will focus on:
Public private partnerships Building International and • Supporting the research and the implementation
North-South: national B&I:
North-South EE and RE
Transport Industry/Utilities
Support from the
of policies which contribute to low carbon
Technology transfer and
Public financial sector development,
• Supporting capacity building on energy
International B&I + academia: International GAA: efficiency and renewable energy, and support
Best practice and expertise from developed countries Fund support from other donors and countries
demonstration projects,
• Promoting energy efficient technology transfer
EE: Energy Efficiency RE: Renewable Energy
B&I: Business and industry GAA: Government Aid Agency
and cooperation between China and developed

Vol.19 • No. 10 • December 2009 / January 2010
Green Page

• Exploring new finance and investment

instruments and sustainable trade opportunities
for energy efficiency and renewable energy
• Improving public awareness on climate change
in order to enable and encourage Chinese
citizens to save energy and the environment.

3. Where does the initiative start?

In the first stage, cooperative pilot projects will be
implemented in the cities of Shanghai and Baoding.
At a later stage more cities will be selected and
join the Initiative.

• New eco-building demonstrations including
policy research on eco-building promotion and
• Energy efficiency improvement of existing
large commercial buildings including
demonstration projects to promote energy
consumption management systems, energy
auditing and retrofitting, energy efficient
operation, capacity building and international
• 20 ways to 20% energy saving campaign, to Baoding’s Power Valley Jinjiang International Hotel is partially powered by
raise public awareness of energy efficiency, self-generated solar electricity, which comes from nearly 4500sqm of solar PV
and to extensively engage the people of China panels that have been integrated into the hotel’s design.  
in energy saving
Exploring the low carbon city development
Baoding: path is promising yet challenging, and more
• Networking on sustainable energy knowledge participation and support from governments,
management and technology cooperation research institutes, companies and international
including information database and service organizations is required. WWF will develop and
platform on renewable energy, patent pre- deliver all LCCI activities together with partners
warning mechanism on renewable energy on this open platform, joining global actions to
technology, technology exchange and combat climate change.
• Encouraging the investment in and export of Partners
sustainable energy products including policy • Energy Research Institute of the National
research on ways to promote the renewable Development and Reform Commission
energy industry, training on international trade • Shanghai Construction and Communication
measures of renewable energy products, and Commission
exchange of investment and financing in the • National Renewable Energy Industrial
renewable energy industry Production Base (Baoding)
• Capacity building in city planning and • C h i n e s e Re n e w a b l e E n e r g y I n d u s t r i e s
industrial park development including Association
design and implementation of a Solar Energy • Chinese Wind Energy Association
Demonstration City action plan and Wind • Shanghai Research Institute of Building Science
Energy Industrial Park development plan, • Administration of Baoding National Hi-tech
and development of certification service and Industry Development Zone
public technology platforms • HSBC Climate Partnership
• WWF - UK, Netherlands, Sweden, Norway,
LCCI will also conduct activities in Beijing Denmark
focusing on low carbon development policy,
promoting the best practices derived from the
pilot projects, and making the 20 ways to 20% Source:
energy saving campaign a success. php?loca=1&sub=96

Vol.19 • No. 10 • December 2009 / January 2010

China beaches By Sara Caris

Lying on the beach is not the first thing that comes to mind, when you think about China. The average
Chinese does not want to get a tan and most of them cannot even swim. Most of them are wearing an
umbrella to protect from the sun because a tan doesn’t look very healthy. So it is hard to find any sunscreen
below factor 30 and most of the creams are whitening. But of course it can be extremely hot, so to cool
down they made a “Fake” Beach in Shanghai: Dino Beach. They claim it is the largest water park in Asia.
The sand is imported from the south of China, a wave machine guarantees perfect surfing waves and the
rumour goes that the roof can be closed. Every year there is a Miss Beach Honey Pageant.
But of course there are real beaches in China. Here is a guide with a variety of the best beaches.

The island Putuoshan, Zhejiang (south of considered one of the best in China by the Chinese,
Shanghai) is a relaxing and spiritual getaway with and is very popular among young tourists. So you
well-looked after patrolled beaches. This mystical have to arrive early to claim a spot in the sand.
place, seeped in folklore, has become a Buddhist The beach also hosts an annual sandcastle-making
sanctuary attracting pilgrims from all over China. competition in August, but where they find the
Along the hike you’ll come across temples, the space is a total mystery.
smell of incense in the air and sounds of distant How to get there: Fly to Qingdao
chanting. If you climb 297m. to the top of its peak Located just across the straits from Taiwan,
you have beautiful sea views. Xiamen is famous for its long stretch of
How to get there: A 12 hours ferry is the only accessible beach and infinite island exploration
way to get to the island from Shanghai. Seats or possibilities.
beds can be booked from the ticket office under The Drum Wave Islet (eco beach) was for
Nanpu bridge (call 337 66178 to book) . centuries the home of wealthy foreign and Chinese
At the east coast of China Qingdao, Shandong traders on China’s old Maritime Silk Road, the
(classic fun beach) is famous for its beaches, ca. 2 sqkm island is home to endless paths that
its beer and its beer festival. Of its six beaches, meander through sea surf and wind-swept rocks.
Huiquan Beach (the leading bathing beach) is With cars, mopeds and even bicycles forbidden,
tranquil Drum Wave is a stunning place for
natural exploration, with numerous guesthouses
and restaurants dotted here and there. Though
it lacks much beach, it’s possible to swim off
its outcroppings. For real beach going, head to
Xiamen proper, an island in itself with numerous
beaching and sunning possibilities.
How to get there: Fly to Xiamen. Take a ferry
700m across Xiamen Harbor to Drum Wave Islet.
The best place for kite surfing in China is
Haiyuntai beach (sporty beach) in Xiamen.
The 8km-long beach has become a haven for
enthusiasts because of its wide stretches of sand
and ever-changing windy conditions. One thing to
be aware of is the drastic tide changes, so always
double-check the weather conditions online before
you go. Also, be aware of the rocky areas in the
water towards the east of the beach. There’s a
kite surfing centre on the sand.
How to get there: Fly to Xiamen Airport and
then get buses 29, 47, 503 or 805 to the Asia Gulf
Hotel. For kite surfing lessons call: 13959211005.
If you want a real castaway experience book a
mid-week to the Gulangyu Island (empty beach)
also known as the ‘Piano Island’ in Xiamen.
On special occasions, national holidays and on
weekends, the beaches will be relatively busy,

Vol.19 • No. 10 • December 2009 / January 2010

entertainment and it’s a long way to the local

shops. Be sure to bring a few books as well as food
and water. However, if you want all your essentials
taken care of, the new luxury Le Meridien resort
faces the beach and offers comfortable loungers
on the bay.
How to get there: Fly to Sanya and it takes
around an hour drive from Sanya to stay at Le
Meridien Sanya.
If you can find space, Dadonghai beach
(classic fun beach) is the perfect place to lie
back on your towel, close your eyes and listen
to the delighted screams of children piling onto
banana boats and lobbing balls at each other. On
but on the whole they are never to crowded. this family beach there is something to do every
When you’ve made it onto the island everything moment of the day. At the promenade you find
is within walking distance. The traditional fishing meat stick stalls, Russian vodka bars and dozens
bays are rustic and charming. Bring food for a BBQ of families wearing matching Hawaiian-style shirts
in the pits provided, then meander the pathways and shorts. There’s also a mega shopping centre
to colonial mansions and past the dramatic sea- (Summer Mall) right by the shore selling all sorts
crashing waves on the rocks. of international brands. But if you actually get a
How to get there: From Xiamen Airport, take chance to stop and look, the views are tropically
Bus 27 to the ferry. gorgeous with white sands, palm trees and
Hong Kong has many beaches. The Shek O shimmering blue waters along the stretch of this
beach (classic fun beach) has great facilities, crescent-shaped beach.
sensational scenery and a laid-back party How to get there: Fly to Sanya. Shuttle buses
atmosphere. Her you see an mix of surf dudes, run from Sanya Airport to Dadonghai.
families, sunbathers, hippies and expat wives You can find a ‘secret’ surfers spot at Houhai
in relaxation mode. The small seaside village of beach (sporty beach). The Chinese only started
Shek O is a great place to wander or grab a bite surfing in Hainan a few years ago. Locals will stand
to eat when you’ve finished tanning. watching, perplexed, as crazy Westerners carve up
How to get there: In Hong Kong; Take the this beautiful all-year-round long boarders wave.
MTR to Shau Kei Wan station and take exit A2. Local surf outfit Surfing Hainan will pick you up,
From the bus terminal, take Bus 9 heading to take you there, lend and give instructions.
Shek O beach. How to get there: Fly to Sanya and stay in
You will find peaceful romance at Lamma either Dadonghai or Yalong bay, or contact Surfing
Island. Yung Shue Wan is home to artsy expats and Hainan at
the most popular beach on the island, Hung Shing The China beach tour will finish at the famous
Yeh beach, is only a 15-minute walk. The sand is resort brand the Banyan Tree. This is a villa-only
very fine here, and the water extremely clean, resort with a private beach far from the sprawl of
making it a Grade 1 beach. You can eat at a snack Sanya City at the Luhuitou Bay (romantic beach).
shack, have barbecue under the palms or have All the 61 secluded villas have a large ‘natural’
dinner at one of the fresh seafood restaurants at private pool an outdoor sunken bathtub. The beach
Sok Kwu. The almost unvisited Lo So Shing Beach is private and offers full amenities, plus you get
also Grade 1 has a few amenities but is a peaceful, your own little bed-cabin to hide away from the
heart-skipping paradise. midday sun. This resort is a favourite get-away for
How to get there: Once you arrive in Hong the Chinese Heads of State.
Kong, catch a ferry from Central to Sok Kwu Wan How to get there: Several airlines fly
(Lamma Island), then just follow the signs. daily to Sanya from both Pudong and Hongqiao
The best beach destination of China is the (prices vary). Banyan Tree Sanya arranges Sanya
island province Hainan and especially the area Airport pick-ups. For more information visit
around Sanya City.
The Shimei Bay (empty beach) offers zero
distractions but plenty of time to get lost in your More info on beaches in China: http://shanghai.
own thoughts. In this tropical idyll you’ll have all
the soft sand to yourself. There isn’t any kind of travel/1924-chinese-beaches-the-classics

Vol.19 • No. 10 • December 2009 / January 2010

Ask4Me in Guangzhou By Frank Kuijsters

Ask4Me is a product design agency that offers western design services and operates from Guangzhou.
China. From their head office in Guangzhou, founder and Director Boukje Koch tells us more about
her organisation and working in China.

Group focus
on product
casing design,
mould design. Since when do you live in China, and what How do the Chinese perceive you and
kind of activities do you have in China? Ask4Me?
The strength I came to China to set up a factory for a Dutch Looking at the size of China’s population, talking
of Ask4Me company that develops and produces greeting about “the Chinese” in general is quite difficult.
Group is that cards with sound and light technology together Ask4Me Group is located in Guangzhou, which is
with husband Jorg van den Hoven (MSc). We the provincial capital of Guangdong province. We
it is located successfully built up a factory with 1000+ choose to locate in Guangdong as it has the best
in China. employees. After a year or two we both missed availability of materials, services and knowledge
work that was related to our education, product for consumer (electronic) products. Guangzhou is
design development. So we decided to start our in the middle of Guangdong making it an easy HUB
own product design agency. Ask4Me Group works to go between cities in this province, and it has a
for clients who already know that the production good link to Hong Kong. The city has a population
and assembly will be in China. We focus on product estimated around 11 million inhabitants.
development: prototyping, CAD engineering, Guangzhou itself has a unique character; green,
casing design, electronic component selection, nice people, with international and alternative
injection mould design. The strength of Ask4Me scenes. My experience with Chinese people is that
Group is that it is located in China. For example, they are very interested in what is not Chinese.
during engineering phase Ask4Me Group aims to For example, Ask4Me Group is often present at
design the product in such a way that the Chinese Chinese fairs and exhibitions related to product
factory worker knows how to assemble the product design. I notice that having a western face in the
without much explanation. Plus Ask4Me Group has booth is already enough to attract many curious
the advantage that it has Dutch-Chinese dialogues manufacturers. With its participation in Chinese
during the whole product development, instead of Fairs Ask4Me Group tries to contribute to the
only during production and assembly. This reduces definition of design in China: If you say you are
the problems of translating a product designed a designer in China, most Chinese will think it
with a western mindset into Chinese production. is related to art, shapes, colors, graphics and

Vol.19 • No. 10 • December 2009 / January 2010
fashion. We try to emphasize that design is also China is often regarded as one of the
related to engineering and quality. most competitive markets, amongst others
because of tough competition and frequent
What’s your most remarkable personal prices wars. What strategy did you choose
experience on doing business in China? in this market?
It is difficult to feel bored as a product designer Our clients are mostly western clients that produce
in China, one day is never the same. I like most for Europe, the America’s or Australia. However,
projects we did so far: because every time it is a the number of our Chinese clients is growing.
challenge to make things work. One nice example These clients want western design, because they
of last year is the “Kidsclock”. It is a clock for can use that as a marketing strategy. Therefore
children who just start to have a concept of the products we design for the Chinese market are
‘time’, but who can’t read a clock yet. With a mostly sold for high end prices, simply because
flying airplane (the second needle) and a slowly they have the label European Design. This is the
moving bicycle and car, the kids will learn when opposite compared to our western clients, they
it is time to eat, sleep or take piano lessons. We come to us for our competitive prices.
spend great effort to get for example the right
construction of the clock’s pointers, to find a good What tips & tricks can you share with
solution for the printed parts, design it in such a other Dutch businessmen seeking success
way that we can have all CE certifications and most in China?
of all keep the price competitive. The responses I am quite proud on my accomplishments. I like
of distributors have been overwhelming for both my work and have confident in my team: one
our client and us. day we are discussing mould changes with our
mould partner, the other day I am sculpting a
chair with a Chinese foam artist, the other day
we are finding out what smells you can add to
plastic. If I could change one thing, I wish things
would take less time in China. Chinese prices are
competitive compared to the West, but Chinese
time consumption is not always as efficient as you
hope for. However with all factories disappearing
in many countries, China is the place where you
can find out how stuff works. Not by browsing on
the internet, but by actually seeing how they are
made. This is a type of knowledge that is often
forgotten, but essential for realizing innovation.

For more information about Ask4Me visit their


Vol.19 • No. 10 • December 2009 / January 2010

Doing business in China,

an interview with Michiel Verhoeven
By Marleen Dieleman

Who are you and what is your position in How do the Chinese perceive you and
Microsoft? Microsoft?
I am Michiel Verhoeven and currently the Vice Microsoft is a global organization and has been
President of Microsoft Services for Asia-Pacific, very active in participating in China’s commercial
Greater China, India and Japan (APJ). As a growth, having set up representative offices in
member of the Worldwide Microsoft Services 1992, followed by establishing ourselves formally
Leadership Team, my role is to represent the in 1995. Then we gradually setup our R&D,
Services organization in APJ with about 4,700 Services and Research organization in China and
employees and additional vendor staff. We have it is important to note that in no other market
a Consulting & Premier organization, Sales teams, place except the U.S. does Microsoft have such
Customer Service & Support,  and Global Delivery a comprehensive line of operations. Microsoft
teams. These teams are instrumental in ensuring products are widely adopted and recognized in
we successfully deploy Microsoft software with China. We have a deep commitment to invest
our partners so that customers enjoy productive in China for both local and global capabilities.
use of our technologies. Currently, we have over 6,000 employees,
Although I was born and raised in The more than 13 branch offices and more than 20
Netherlands, I left about 20 years ago. A sense technology centres, and we continue to see China
of adventure has always driven me, not in the as a very strategic market for the company’s
least since my mum’s family has a long Indonesian future growth. China has a lot of potential as the
history. I completed my HEAO degree in The Hague, top IT market by users worldwide, with over 200
attended a French university and enjoyed my MBA million Internet users and over 500 million mobile
in the USA. After working in The Netherlands, users. In addition, we are proud to develop a
France and the USA, Asia has been my home for diverse talent pool with global capabilities not
almost 12 years now. just in R&D, but also in our customer service and
  support organization, which boasts 21 nationalities
How often do you travel to China, and what working in our Shanghai office.
kind of activities do you have in China?  As far as how I am perceived by my Chinese
I travel to China almost every six weeks and my colleagues and business partners, I think the
usual engagements in China include meeting biggest challenge in the beginning was the fact
customers, business and technology partners, as that I probably look very young for someone in
well as meeting my colleagues there. Personally this position, especially since I am foreign and my
I believe it’s paramount for leaders to hear the colleagues must have thought I needed a lot of
voice of the customer, partner and employee coaching on local business practices – therefore,
first hand and advocate their needs across the people who met me for the first time might not
worldwide organization. Building organizational have tagged much credibility just by looking at
capability is my first priority in China, while me. What they didn’t know was the fact that I
growing the business in a transparent manner. have lived in Asia for the past 12 years! That has
We have a large presence in China across sales, certainly changed now and I have built a really
delivery, support and R&D organizations. So I strong relationship with my teams and business
try to spend a lot of time with the Microsoft partners in China.
China leadership team, members of the Services  My approach is to always find out what the
organization, including our customer service and customers want, and what pain point I can help
support organization, sales and marketing teams them address. I want to share my experiences
and consulting delivery teams. The activities on my business philosophies and management
range from strategic leadership meetings and learnings to my team and help them sharpen their
people reviews to conducting operational reviews customer focus, and show customers they are being
and roundtable discussions with customers and listened to and taken care of. That, I feel, is a
employees. Connecting across the chain is a well key step towards gaining credibility and winning
orchestrated effort to gain insight and to motivate trust from customers and partners. I also make a
people. My trips usually include celebratory commitment to my teams and customers that I
dinners with my teams to thank them for their will visit once every 2-3 months and have them
contributions. trust that we are always making sure things are

Vol.19 • No. 10 • December 2009 / January 2010

running on the right track for them. That is also China is often regarded as one of the
very comforting for them to know we are fighting most competitive markets, amongst others
for their rights and benefits. because of tough competition and frequent
 I also tell my team that people are not judged price wars. What strategy did you choose
on their language capabilities, so I practice in this market?
patience (especially when English was also not Our strategy has been working closely with
my mother tongue) when some of the team our customers and business partners to gain
members have great ideas to share but might trust and helping them build brand loyalty. For
need some help conveying them in English. example, we recently announced a partnership
  with Agricultural Bank of China (ABC) through
What’s your most remarkable personal which Microsoft has been supplying software,
experience on doing business in China? consulting, and technological support to help
There are many stories to tell, and I have made scale ABC’s business growth and competitiveness.
mistakes, some are better told over beers. But I We have gone live with very large mission-critical
remember when I first started doing business in projects in the backend infrastructure supporting
China, simple things such as seating arrangements the consumer and corporate banking channels.
are done with the utmost care and precision, This is of huge significance as we are providing
whereas in Holland, we are a lot more casual and solutions and are not only helping one of China’s
non-hierachical. I still have to smile when people largest banks with its desktop management, but
are nervously leading me to a high-level customer also the backend infrastructure. We have been
meeting which can feel like a royal ceremony, enjoying similar successes in China in other
complete with high chairs and tea.    banks, telecommunications companies and large
We are also more direct as a culture and tend enterprises because of the solution sales and
to think it’s acceptable to tackle business issues delivery approach with our partners. This goes
head on. Being honest and open is what we value. beyond software legalization and speaks to the
So once somebody has said yes to what we ask for, level of trust in our technology and the ecosystem
we think it’s a done deal and a decision that will be that we are building out.
acted upon. But it can be insulting, embarrassing  We have been working hard on educating
and disrespectful to those surrounding you. We Chinese institutions on the value of Intellectual
have to learn and appreciate the dynamics, Property (IP) and embracing the need to
while walking the corridors before and after shift towards a knowledge economy. Through
the meetings, and doing the homework. It takes government citizenship programs, R&D, educational
more effort to find out what’s been committed programs, channel programs, enterprise solution
to and what not. It meant that as a Dutch person sales and delivery, while working closely with
I have had to take risks on people without System Integrators (SI) and Independent Software
hearing the words I wanted
to. That can cost dearly,
although it creates amazing
loyalty and traction. Stick
to your values, no matter
what cultural differences, is
my belief. You can liberally
use the Dutch style once
people know you care about
them. Then you make fun of
yourself and they will accept
our directness. Hearing a
“yes” is a real yes only when
the validation is there in the
actions and results.
 Ultimately, in my travels
through China and other
parts of Asia Pacific, I have
found being approachable,
interested and authentic
the best way of overcoming
differences. I have been
thoroughly inspired by the
diverse people I meet, and the
great work we do together.

Vol.19 • No. 10 • December 2009 / January 2010

Vendors (ISVs) to help them go to market. We also advocate transparent business practices.
work very closely with our local OEM partners like Keep your focus on helping customers solve
Lenovo, to strengthen a stronger partnerships problems. Use data and business intelligence
that will extend collaboration to benefit our end to effectively run your operations. Put
customers with integrated hardware and software yourself in the shoes of your staff, partners or
support. Enabling partner ecosystem and growing customers and see their point of view when
with the local industry is our long-term strategy faced with challenging dilemmas. I believe a
and view, and we continue to see encouraging management team should trust their employees
results on all fronts. to do the right thing, but be ready to enforce
  accountability when it’s necessary.
Looking back on your activities in China,  4. Be determined and accountable - When you
what would you do differently? What tips are pursuing long term goals, it does come with
& tricks can you share with other Dutch short term deliverables and P&L constraints.
businessmen seeking success in China? Influence your headquarters, share global
I would certainly recommend people to live in strategies and advocate local needs. Patience
China, which is something I have not had the has never been my biggest strength and
chance to do. If you truly want to understand, I’m constantly reminded. Holding people
motivate and influence, it’s best that you live accountable on quarterly and annual results
there, build genuine connections and immerse is relatively easy, but differentiation comes
yourself. Flying in and out of the country gives from influencing the drivers that allow you
you impressions and insights but does not have the to execute on 3-5 year goals.
same impact. Learn the language if you can invest  
the time and have the discipline, make friends As member of the Services organization,
beyond work, and learn about communication one of fundamental things we have to do is
styles and relationship networks.   shift perception and educate the market on the
value of intangible goods, as it is very different
Here are a few lessons learned and tips: between the East and West. This means a constant
1. Be the voice of customers – Lead by example commitment to excellence from pre-sales all the
and show the teams how your company way to support, and life cycle management to
strategy flows through in execution. help our customers understand their needs and
2. Invest in the best talent -  People make the their rights.
most difference in the quality of your service  I see this as a long term cultivation of mutual
and product innovation. Take a long-term understanding and see mutual business benefits in
view to hire, develop, rotate and retain talent China. I encourage you to advocate best practices,
for China. Create a culture with passion and spend time and make effort to build informal
energy that is compelling and rewarding. relationships. Take an interest in your business
Employees and customers will reward you. associates and their families and you’ll find that
3. Never compromise on your values -  Rooting there are a lot of shared family values between the
out systemic issues in business practices will Chinese and the Dutch cultures. If you establish
take a generation. The causes arise from a connection and build trust, your business
economic differences, status quo and fear- experience in China should be a successful and
based decisions. Address them and relentlessly pleasant one for many years to come.

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Vol.19 • No. 10 • December 2009 / January 2010

The Little Red Book

By Richard Soemita

Quotations from Chairman Mao Zedong, better known in the West as The Little Red
Book, was published by the Government of the People’s Republic of China from April
1964 until approximately 1976. As its title implies, it is a collection of quotations excerpted
from Mao Zedong’s past speeches and publications. The book’s alternative title The Little Red
Book was coined by the West for its pocket-sized edition, which was specifically printed and
sold to facilitate easy carrying. The closest equivalent in Chinese is, literally “The Red Treasured
Book”, which was a term popular during the Cultural Revolution.
The most printed book in the twentieth century, Quotations had an estimated 5 to 6.5 billion
copies printed during Mao’s attempt to transform Chinese society. The book’s phenomenal
popularity may be due to the fact that it was essentially an unofficial requirement for every
Chinese citizen to own, to read, and to carry it at all times during the later half of Mao’s rule,
especially during the Cultural Revolution.
During the Cultural Revolution, studying the book was not only required in schools but was
also a standard practice in the workplace as well. All units, in the industrial, commercial, agricultural,
civil service, and military sectors, organized group sessions for the entire workforce to study the book
during working hours. Quotes from Mao were either bold-faced or highlighted in red, and almost all
writing, including scientific essays, had to quote Mao.
To defend against the theory that it would be counter-productive, it was argued that understanding
Mao’s quotes could definitely bring about enlightenment to the work unit, resulting in production
improvement to offset the time lost.
During the 1960s, the book was the single most visible icon in mainland China, even more visible
than the image of the Chairman himself. In posters and pictures created by CPC’s propaganda artists,
nearly every painted character, except Mao himself, either smiling or looking determined, was always
seen with a copy of the book in his or her hand.
After the end of the Cultural Revolution in 1976 and the rise of Deng Xiaoping in 1978, the importance
of the book waned considerably, and the glorification of Mao’s quotations was considered to be left
deviationism and a cult of personality. The original books now became a collector’s item and some
editions are highly sought after. The book has been translated in many languages, even in Dutch and
was first published in 1967 by A.W.Bruna & Zonen.
Mao’s quotations are categorized into 33 chapters in the book. Its topics mainly deal with Mao’s
ideology, known in the West as Maoism and officially as “Mao Zedong Thought.”

Vol.19 • No. 10 • December 2009 / January 2010

Tibet, or did the 13th

Dalai Lama kowtow?
By Willem Anne Hoekstra

Kowtow: To kneel and touch the forehead to the Dynasty conquest onward. Now how did today’s
ground in expression of deep respect, worship, dispute start? The essence of the conflicting claims
or submission, as formerly done in China. of three parties of the sovereignty over Tibet can
My good father taught me that there are only be understood in the context of history, and
three subjects to avoid during conversations at more importantly, the interpretation of history.
the dinner table: Money, Politics and Women. First a few facts. Tibet was first unified under
How right he was. When I was having dinner with King Songtsän Gampo in the 7th century. Over the
a Greek colleague in Athens many moons ago, I last centuries, a line of spiritual leaders called
casually mentioned the case of Macedonia. This Dalai Lamas ruled as head of government, ruling in
resulted in a 3-hour passionate lecture from a close relationship with the Chinese Dynasties.
his side on how unfair and wrong the claim of In 1904, the British invaded the country,
independence of the Macedonians was, because after Tibet had been closed to all foreigners for
in 14th century... Similarly I was ignorant enough half a century. The British then agreed with the
to mention something neutrally supportive of Chinese that the Qing would have sovereignty
the Palestinians to an Israeli friend of mine. A in return for a British fee and free trade with
big mistake, it took months before we were on Tibet. Following this, the Qing government sent
speaking terms again. Did I mention my friend a military expedition of its own to establish direct
in Northern Ireland yet? Maybe I am ‘een beetje Chinese rule and deposed the Dalai Lama in an
dom’? imperial edict.
Two years ago, I was on a business trip to our In 1913, (after the fall of the Chinese
office in Shanghai, and I was silly enough to ask Qing dynasty) the 13th Dalai Lama proclaimed
about the situation in Tibet. Me and my big Dutch independence and expelled all Chinese
opinionated mouth. Wasn’t it that China invaded representatives, an action never accepted by
poor Tibet, and the Dalai Lama is the good guy who China, or by any other state. Tibet however de
now tries to liberate the poor monks, right? Well, facto lived autonomous for the next 36 years,
not quite, according to my Chinese colleagues. whilst the republic of China (ROC) endured its
Soon I understood that Chinese students are Warlord era, civil war, and World War II.
taught that Tibet has been an “inalienable part The ROC was ruling mainland China between
of Chinese territory”, from the time of the Yuan 1912-1949, before it took refuge, and today de
facto is based and governing Taiwan. It has kept
its claim to legitimate sovereignty over China,
including Tibet. Note that even during its factual
government of China, it did never have real
control over the region.
The new People’s Republic of China PRC,
which governs China since 1949, contends that
according to the “Succession of States Theory”
in international law, all subsequent Chinese
governments (Ming Dynasty, Qing Dynasty, ROC
and PRC) have succeeded the Yuan Dynasty
in exercising de jure sovereignty and de facto
power over Tibet.
The Tibet government in exile, under
leadership of the 14th Dalai Lama, has a different
reading of history. In their view, during the earlier
dynasties, Tibet and China cooperated on the
basis of ‘benefactor and priest’ relationship,
perhaps comparable to the Vatican and Italy.
The relationship did not imply “subordination
of one to the other”. The 13th Dalai Lama, for
example, knelt, but did not kowtow, before the
Empress Dowager and the young Emperor while
he delivered his petition in Beijing. Chinese

Vol.19 • No. 10 • December 2009 / January 2010
sources emphasize the submission of kneeling
here, whilst Tibetan sources emphasize the lack
of the kowtow.
In 1950, the PRC invaded Tibet, in an attempt
to liberate it from the ruling Tibetan government,
which held the despotic rule of aristocracy and
monasteries in power, rejecting any form of
modernization, at the expense of 95% of Tibetans
of the population who lived like ‘serfs’ in a feudal
serfdom or “hell on earth”. Except from a very thin
top layer in society, Tibetans had no mentionable
access to education, care, democracy, media, and
lived in primitive conditions. Mao Zedong stated born in 1935 and proclaimed the tulku or rebirth
that the decision to unite Tibet into the PRC was of the 13th Dalai Lama at the age of two.
done to achieve ethnic equality and to “free Since the invasion, reports on the situation are
Tibetans from imperialist oppression”. quite contradictory. Chinese sources claim rapid
Tibetan sources however describe the progress for prosperous, free, and happy Tibetans
people in the same period as happy, content, and participating in democratic reforms. Tibetans,
devoted to Buddhism. It is a religious devotism on the other hand, call the PRC rule illegitimate,
which clearly finds a different interpretation in motivated solely by the natural resources and
Marxist / communist ideology. Is religion a freedom strategic value of Tibet. They say the Chinese
or a means of oppression? feel superior to the Tibetans, using assimilationist
In any case, one year after the invasion, the policies and even genocide, aimed at destroying
PRC and Tibetan representatives both signed and Tibet’s distinct ethnic makeup, culture, and
ratified the “Seventeen Point Agreement for the identity, thereby cementing it as an indivisible
Peaceful Liberation of Tibet”, in which Tibet is an part of China. So far there has been no open and
autonomous region within the Chinese sovereignty, free election under Chinese rule yet.
and recognition of the Dalai Lama and of the The current policy of the Dalai Lama, is that
Panchen Lama. However, Tibetan leaders later he does not seek full independence for Tibet,
contended this treaty, as it was signed under but would accept Tibet as a genuine autonomous
pressure (the PRC had 20.000 troupes waiting at region within the People’s Republic of China, under
the border) the democratic condition of freedom of speech
The Tibet territory has always been under and expression and genuine self-rule.
debate. Two provinces (Xikang and Qinghai) that The Human Rights Watch World Report 2008
were excluded from the treaty, revolted when reports on Tibet: “Widespread and numerous
they faced the Chinese land redistribution policies. instances of repression target ordinary citizens,
This 1957 upraise was forcefully suppressed by monks, nuns, and even children in an effort to
the Chinese People’s Liberation Army, allegedly quash alleged ‘separatism’.” The examples given
not shy of brutal torture. The number of freedom are those arrests of protestors, political graffiti-
fighters grew rapidly, receiving American support, writers, and others unsolicited expressions of
leading to the summit in the Lhasa uprising of opinion.
1959. A gathering of 30.000 people at the Dalai Today, the Tibet government in exile is not
Lama’s palace was dramatically shelled with PLA recognized by any government in the world.
artillery. Some reports estimate the casualties in The territory is part of China. However, various
all the conflicts as much as 85.000. Clearly, the governments and international institutions do
Chinese ‘peaceful liberation of Tibet’ had gone support the social and cultural activities organized
terribly wrong and was widely condemned. Various by the government-in-exile.
countries and committees openly disapproved, At this point I notice I have been living in
and the UN General Assembly condemned China Singapore for too long. I think to myself: yeah lah,
for “violations of fundamental human rights but if you write politically loaded graffiti slogans
of the Tibetan people” in 1959, 1961 and 1965 on a public wall, organize a protest, or loudly
resolutions. voice an opinion in conflict with the government,
Following the defeat, the Dalai Lama fled to or expect open and free elections, obviously you
India, and formed a government-in-exile. The PRC will be arrested and imprisoned or caned. But is
sees the continued western support to the Dalai this normal?
Lama, the government-in-exile and resistance Both parties seem to have point, whether the
movements as a threat to Chinese territorial Dalai Lama kowtowed or not. But I think my good
integrity, sovereignty and stability. father was right. Better not raise the subject at
Jetsun Jamphel Ngawang Lobsang Yeshe Tenzin the dinner table. Especially not with Chinese
Gyatso, better known as the 14th Dalai Lama, was business prospects.

Vol.19 • No. 10 • December 2009 / January 2010
Know your tax

China challenges Special

Purpose Vehicles
By Pieter de Ridder and Nicolien Luijsterburg of Loyens & Loeff

With the introduction of the new Enterprise Income Tax Law (“EIT”) in 2008 and the subsequent regulations
issued by the State Administration of Taxation (“SAT”) of China, new anti-avoidance rules have entered
into force and more attention is paid by China to tax avoidance arrangements.
During the course of 2009, the SAT issued various circulars to combat tax avoidance and tax treaty
abuse. In January 2009, a circular was issued in which the SAT further explained the rationale of the
general anti-abuse clause as included in the EIT. It was announced that, among others, the SAT was likely
to challenge structures where, in their view, investors abuse China’s tax treaties. Tax treaty benefits can
be disallowed if the main purpose of invoking a tax treaty is to obtain Chinese tax benefits. In this regard,
countries such as Singapore, Mauritius, Barbados and Ireland may expect more attention from the SAT.
A favorable tax treaty could reduce local Chinese withholding taxes on dividend distributions, interest
payments as well as royalty payments substantially. Also, a limited number of China’s tax treaties protect
against China’s 10% non-resident capital gains tax due on gains realized by a foreign investor on the sale
of its Chinese investment. The SAT explained in another Notice, that
in order to benefit from reduced withholding taxes on dividends
under a tax treaty certain conditions must be met. Among others
A favorable tax treaty could reduce (i) the recipient of the dividend must be a tax resident of the other
local Chinese withholding taxes on dividend treaty jurisdiction; ii) the recipient of the dividend must be the
distributions, interest payments as well beneficial owner of the dividend; and iii) the dividend must qualify
as a dividend under the tax law of China. SAT requires the taxpayer
as royalty payments substantially. Also, to prove - with substantial documentation - that the requirements
a limited number of China’s tax treaties to be able to benefit from the tax treaty are met.
The SAT went on to deny tax treaty benefits in two important
protect against China’s 10% non-resident cases this year, the Chongqing case and the Xinjiang case, which
capital gains tax due on gains realized by deserve attention and watching by the international investment
a foreign investor on the sale of its Chinese community in relation to how the Chinese tax authorities may behave
in international structures where a special purpose vehicles (“SPV”)
investment. is used. In the Chongqing case, a Singapore company (“SingCo 1”)
sold the shares of another Singapore company (“SingCo2”) which, in
turn, held shares of a Chinese company. The SAT disregarded SingCo
2 for tax purposes and subsequently subjected SingCo 1 to tax on the capital gains realized with the sale.
In the Xinjiang case, the tax treaty between China and Barbados was disregarded as, according to the
SAT, the Barbados company was unable to prove its tax residency in Barbados.
More recently, on 5 November 2009, the SAT released its newest circular to tackle foreign structures
which addresses the issue of “Beneficial Ownership under Tax Treaties”. In order to enjoy the reduced
withholding tax rates on dividends, interest or royalty payments under a tax treaty, the recipient of the
payment should qualify as the beneficial owner. Based on the newest circular, beneficial owner refers to
any person who owns or has control over certain income or the rights or assets which give rise to such
income. Also, the beneficial owner should generally be engaged in substantial business activities and
cannot be an agent or a conduit company.
In relation to the above, the tax circular stipulates that a substance-over-form approach will be
applied. For example, if the applicant has the obligation to pay or distribute all or a substantial part
of its income (e.g., more than 60%) to a third country resident within a prescribed time (e.g., within
12 months after receiving such income) this may jeopardize its beneficial ownership status.
When taking the above into account it is obvious that China is currently developing its anti-abuse
legislation. In this regard, China is likely to scrutinize common international tax structures where
investments into China are structured through a SPV located in a jurisdiction which has a favorable tax
treaty with China. It is therefore now, more then ever before, important that proper attention is given to
ensuring that the holding structure of Chinese investments can be supported by sufficient business arguments
and substance that justify the structure. Investors should consult their tax advisers in order to establish
the right investment structure, both for existing as well as for new investments into China.

Vol.19 • No. 10 • December 2009 / January 2010
Column By…

Time to move to Paraguay?

Well, Singapore is heading that way: we do not want to live
Richard Soemita in an HDB flat, have to hire maids since grandparents do not
live in to look after our kids, we pay taxes and do not get any
allowances or CPF and all non-Asian restaurants are basically
put there for us angmohs, where they can charge us at least
SGD 250 for not even a decent meal and a bottle of wine for 2
persons. The average meal in a hawker centre is just over SGD
2.50. For those who can calculate, this 100 times more ! Do we
earn 100 times more than the locals? Furthermore you DO NOT
want to eat in a hawker centre every month, let alone every
day. On that note: you realize how much MSG is being served
at an average food stall? Just let your food digest for an hour
until you feel your heartbeat going up gradually and have the
terrible urge to drink 2 gallons of water. Its like sitting in death
row waiting for a massive heart attack to strike you. I call it
the wasabi-attack. Put some of the green stuff in your mouth
and wait for 12 seconds (I have timed it) until you think that
your brain has imploded and wants to come out of your nose
after it has filled up your sinuses.
On the world rank, Singapore is the 13th most expensive city

was at Boat Quay last Friday after a long time. All I for expats, even above New York. Moscow is on number 1, but
could see is expats being ripped off. Which brings me that is probably due to an army of security personal you need
to the point that we pay far too much for a pint of beer to hire for not being robbed at daylight.
i.e. double if not triple what you will get in any other local Coming back on the restaurants that serve angmoh food.
neighbourhood or hawker centre. Of course I could go and We should all boycott them until the price levels come down
sit in any hawker centre on a bright yellow plastic bench to a reasonable level. Not to mention to improve the quality
staring miserable in front of me and watching out for the and train their staff how to serve the Western way ie. serve
trolley man to take away your glass if you have not touched everyone their meal at the same time, do not take things away
it every 10 seconds, but BQ just happens to be a stone from the table if they feel like and do not write everything
throw away from the CBD and that’s were all the bankers, on their notepad even if you order just a bottle of sparkling
traders and lawyers have a drink after work, as you do. water.
I was recently in Bali were there are at least 3 After all I feel that it is only the expats that keep the
prices for everything: local price, other Bali price and whole area from Boat Q up to Robertson Q running. Without
foreigner price. One day I went to the local market and us (including my Indian friends at East Coast Park and the
bought some fruit. My Bali friend asked me how much I paid, Filipino maids at Lucky Plaza on Sundays) Singapore would
and was appalled at the enormous amount I had been skinned be for sure a ghost town. In a recent survey it appeared that
for (even though it had seemed cheap to me). So imagine my Holland is the most popular European destination for expats
joy and his embarrassment when 2 days later he went to the in terms of length of stay. More than 3 quarters of expats now
same market, and for the same order of fruit had ended up living in Holland have been there for 3 or more years. HKG
paying more! After I told him to leave his Gucci sunglasses and Singapore were ranked 5th and 6th respectively. But in
and Amrani T-shirt home in future, even though they were terms of cheapest place to live in for expats it is Asuncion,
fake (given the spelling mistake). the capital of Paraguay.

Vol.19 • No. 10 • December 2009 / January 2010
Business news
Sources: Het Financieele Dagblad and Reuters

Dredger Boskalis to
The Netherlands is out of recession take over Smit
The Dutch economy grew by 0.4% in the third quarter of this year, compared with the Dredging company Boskalis has made a
previous quarter, meaning the country is now officially out of recession. The new figures €60 a share offer for maritime services
from the national statistics office CBS show the first period of economic growth in a year. group Smit. The takeover, described as
On an annual basis, however, the economy contracted by 3.7%. ‘According to normal a merger, has the backing of a group of
definitions, the Netherlands is now out of recession,’ the CBS said in a statement. Smit shareholders who control 44% of
‘It’s nice to be able to signal the recovery but we still can’t hang out the flags,’ CBS the company. ‘Combining our companies
economist Michiel Vergeer said. Consumers are still reluctant to make major purchases creates a Dutch maritime player of a
in particular. ‘They are keeping their hands on their cash,’ Vergeer said. global scale. The merger fits excellently
with our strategy aimed at reinforcing
Exports and expanding our maritime services,’
The recovery is still very fragile and almost entirely depends on improvements in said Peter Berdowski, Boskalis CEO. The
the export market. Exports are still lower than a year ago but the decline is smaller scheme is also backed by Smit’s CEO Ben
than in the second half. The finance ministry said the news showed that government Vree who last year rejected takeover
efforts to combat the recession are working. ‘The effect of the stimulus package attempts by Boskalis, including a €1.1bn
is now visible,’ a spokesman said. New figures from the European Union statistics offer. Boskalis has built up a 25% stake
office Eurostat show that the eurozone as a whole is also out of the recession. in Smit since those talks broke down
in December 2008. Analyst Edwin de
Jong from SNS Securities said Boskalis’
commitment to maintain current Smit
Working dads’ Budget deficit deadline strategy and the board job for Vree could
problems in spotlight 2013, says minister be behind the change of heart.

Family minister André Rouvoet is to The European Commission will probably

start research into the problems fathers order the Netherlands to cut its budget
have combining their careers and caring deficit to below the official EU level by Ministers pledge action
for their children. Rouvoet said that 2013, finance minister Wouter Bos said. on early retirement
a ‘cultural shift’ needs to be made at Under EU rules, the budget deficit must
work, in the school playground and in be below 3% of gross domestic product. It Ministers have agreed to draw up proposals
board rooms to make sure fathers can also emerged France and Germany must to encourage older workers not to take
spend more time with their families. The bring their deficits back under control early retirement and to get employees to
research will look at the choices working by 2013. ‘I do not have the impression take on more older staff. The measures
fathers feel they have to make in terms of that the Netherlands is being treated any are to be combined with the increase in
career opportunities in order to become different to other countries,’ Bos said, the state pension age from 65 to 67 and
more involved with their children. The following a meeting of EU ministers in were agreed at parliamentary debate on
Netherlands still tends to see childcare as Brussels. The commission expects the the pension plans. CDA MP Pieter van Geel
the primary task of mothers while fathers Dutch budget deficit to reach 6% next pointed out during the debate that just
continue to work full time, the minister year. Bos said it would be a ‘challenging 38% of men aged 60 to 65 are still working,
said. ‘The question is, is this what fathers deadline but not impossible’. The finance as are 18% of women. But social affairs
who wish to see their children grow up and minister did say he was concerned about minister Piet Hein Donner, who is in charge
mothers who wish to develop professionally how ready some member states are to of steering the pension legislation through
actually want?,’ Rouvoet was saying. Last follow the commission’s instructions. parliament, told later it is harder for young
month, a survey by the government’s social France has already said it will be difficult people to find a job than the over-45s.
policy unit SCP showed most Dutch couples to cut its 8.3% budget deficit in line with Although a majority of MPs support the
are happy with the 1.5 income household Brussels’ timetable. The EU’s economic planned pension age increase, there was
set-up, whereby men work full time and affairs commissioner Joaquin Almunia will much criticism of ministers’ proposals to
women work fewer hours. formally announce the deadlines. help people who do ‘heavy work’.

SNS Reaal moves back into profit

Financial services group SNS Reaal posted schedule and shareholders’ equity is up agency Reuters said. SNS has had €750m
net profit of €26m in the third quarter of ‘significantly’ compared with the end of in state support to ease it through the
2009, the Utrecht-based company said June. The company also said it expected financial crisis and will pay back €185m
in a trading update. Both the banking to take a provision in the fourth quarter to raised through a September share issue
and insurance arms were back in the pay for its share of the savings guarantee later this month. CEO Ronald Latenstein
black, SNS said. SNS posted a loss over scheme for customers of bankrupt DSB told a conference call there was no
2008 as a whole following a poor second bank. SNS said its portion would be 6%. timetable on repaying the rest. ‘It’s a bit
half and made a loss in the first half of Based on the central bank’s estimate of early to predict anything in that area.
2009 as well. SNS said its cost reduction a maximum requirement of €3.25bn, SNS Our intention to go to full repayment is
and integration programmes are on could face a charge of up to €195m, news clearly there.’

Vol.19 • No. 10 • December 2009 / January 2010
Business news
Sources: Het Financieele Dagblad and Reuters

‘Heavy work’ focus of pension plan critique

Opposition MPs launched a strong attack on the cabinet’s how to cope with people who have done hard physical labour
plans to increase the state pension age from 65 to 67 during and cannot work any longer, Rutte said. Alexander Pechtold,
a parliamentary debate. In particular, ministers’ decision to leader of the Liberal democratic party D66, said it would
force employers to find other jobs for people who have done probably be impossible to define the concept of ‘heavy work’.
‘heavy work’ for 30 years came under fire. The Liberals are Femke Halsema, leader of the left-wing greens Groenlinks
not opposed to the pension age increase in principle. However, also supports the increase in principle. But she sided with the
the coalition has made a ‘monster’ out of the plan, Liberal Liberals’ 40-year plan and dismissed the cabinet’s proposals
leader Mark Rutte said. The move will deliver savings too as a ‘political patchwork’.
late, is unfair, is unworkable when it comes to people who
do heavy jobs and will have a drastic effect on employers, Unworkable
Rutte said. The Socialists and anti-Islam PVV both support the current
65-year retirement age. The PVV came under attack from other
Employers parties for saying an end to migration from Muslim countries
The cabinet has agreed to increase the state and corporate would produce enough cost savings to eliminate the need to
pension age from 65 to 66 in 2020 and then to 67 in 2027. They raise the state pension age. Labour’s parliamentary leader
also plan to make it easier for people who do ‘heavy work’ Mariette Hamer said the party is prepared to drop the heavy
to still retire at 65 or be given new, lighter duties by their work clause if it proves to be unworkable. ‘ But we will come
employers. The VVD suggests that everyone who has earned up with something else,’ she was quoted as saying. ‘ Employers
at least 70% of the minimum wage for 40 years should still be must take responsibility for their workers’ careers.’ The debate
allowed to retire at 65. This would get around the problem of is set to continue.

ING moves back into profit Half Holland’s households run

Financial services group ING confirmed it had booked net profit financial risks
of €499m and underlying profit of €778m in the third quarter
of this year, reversing a year of decline. But the company gave Some half of the Netherlands’ seven million households
no more details of its plans to split off its insurance activities. are running the risk of getting into financial trouble because
ING announced its third quarter figures on October 26, at the they don’t have enough savings, says family spending institute
same time it broke news of the separation and a €7.5bn rights Nibud in a new report. Nibud says 25% of households never save
issue. The split up is part of the agreement reached with the and a further 25% only put money away for a rainy day when they
European Commission on ING’s €10bn capital injection from have some left over. And four out of five households never look
the Dutch state. CEO Jan Hommen said ING has completed at what their future spending needs are likely to be. In addition,
most of the first stage of its restructuring process but gave no a quarter of households are overdrawn at the bank at least
more information. ‘It was not an easy decision,’ quoted him as once a month and one third have a non mortgage-related loan,
saying. ‘But I strongly believe this is the right decision at the quoted Nibud as saying. Impulsive people who look for comfort
right moment. The financial services sector will be transformed and an easy life, and career-oriented people with a fondness
by the crisis and the winners will be those who win back the for luxury are the most likely to get into financial difficult, the
trust of their clients.’ report found.

Vol.19 • No. 10 • December 2009 / January 2010
Event Agenda

BODY WORLDS: The original and the cycle of life

DATE : 23rd Oct 2009 to 6th Mar 2010, Mon-Fri 10am - 6pm
(Closed on Mondays except school and public holidays)
VENUE : Science Centre Singapore

BODY WORLDS: The Original and the Cycle of Life features real specimens and has
a special focus on health, wellbeing and the ageing process. This unique exhibition
offers an amazing insight into the human lifecycle.
At the exhibition, you’ll discover the mysteries of how the human body develops
through time; at its most radiant and as it changes, matures and finally wanes.

TICKET PRICE (exclude booking fee): Adult $20, Primary Student $12,
Secondary Student/Senior/Group $16

Reverie: Cirque on Ice Celebrate Christmas

and Carnival in Singapore
DATE : 27th Nov 2009 to 27th Dec 2009
DATE : 18th Dec 2009 to 25th Dec 2009
Tue-Sun: 3.30pm, 7.30pm
18th - 24th Dec 2009, 6.00pm - 10.30pm
Reverie-Cirque on Ice Carnival
25th Dec 2009, 3pm - 11pm
(Daily 2.30pm - 9pm)
VENUE : Various venues in Orchard Road area
VENUE : Singapore Indoor Stadium
Stroll along Wisma Atria and Ngee Ann City and discover
Soar and spin into the fantasy dream world of ice and
how Christmas is celebrated in different cultures. Check
snow this Christmas as Singapore Indoor Stadium (SIS)
out nightly performance featuring mimes, plays, musicals
presents “Reverie: Cirque on Ice” at World’s first and
and more! Enjoy the Floats Parade on Orchard Road and
biggest temporary arena - Arena Stadium Waterfront -
bask in the joyous atmosphere.
starting from 13th of November 2009.
Take on the sights and sounds of Orchard Road. As
Reverie: Cirque on Ice, the creation of former Cirque
you walk through Orchard Road enjoying Christmas in the
de Soleil acrobat and aerialist Michael McPherson, will take
Tropics Light Up, also enjoy the showcasing of the mega
the audience to an enchanted and colourful dreamworld
size displays base on the Christmas scenes.
of fairies, nymphs and mythical creatures. With novel
Join in the interactive Christmas story and experience
combination of theatrical circus artistry and heart-stopping
Bethlehem from over 2000 years ago! Pose with the three
acrobatic performances through seamless blending and
wisemen, walk through Bethlehem’s market streets and
gliding of skaters with soaring aerialists moving in their
catch performances at King Herod’s Palace and the stable
spectacular costumes to the spellbinding music on the
at the nativity scene.
fantastical set under the striking visual lighting.
On 25th Dec evening, a Grand Concert will be happening
Reverie- Cirque on Ice Carnival” (27 Nov-27 Dec) will
on Christmas Day on Orchard Road, literally! Take your
be a thematic non-gated monthlong series of interesting
family portrait with the 7 beautifully decorated Floats that
events and activities to complement SIS’ arena events and
will be parked at Orchard Road on 25th Dec 2009. Join in the
hype up year end festivities, and justifies for a “Uniquely
1000 strong Line Dancing on 25th Dec night.
Singapore” branding.
Share the Joy of distributing the gifts to representatives
from various charities. So, Share the Spirit of Christmas and
TICKET PRICE (exclude booking fee): $60, $90, $120 (VIP)
come Celebrate Christmas In Singapore!
Free entry for “Reverie- Cirque on Ice Carnival”
DURATION: Approx 120 mins TICKET PRICE: free

Vol.19 • No. 10 • December 2009 / January 2010
Event Agenda

Marina Bay SINGAPORE Countdown 09/10

Siloso Beach Party
DATE : 31st Dec 2009, starts at 7pm till 1am
VENUE : Marina Bay DATE : 31st Dec 2009, 8pm - 6am
VENUE : Siloso Beach, Sentosa
Catch the brilliant fireworks display as you count SYNOPSIS
down to the new year at the signature annual Asia’s Grooviest Beach Party - Siloso Beach
Marina Bay SINGAPORE Countdown 09/10. More Party at Sentosa – is turning up the heat this
than just a festive celebration, this year-end year with MORE DJ line-ups, the SIGNATURE
tradition for Singapore will bring together the foam pool and sandy dance floor!
collective wishes and aspirations of thousands of Shake those svelte bodies to pulsating
people, and unite all in counting down the final seconds of the year to celebrate music and groove to the beat at the new chill-
the beginning of a new year full of hopes, challenges, changes and dreams. out stage. Fuel your energy with the wide array
Broadcast LIVE on Channel NewsAsia, the Countdown will also capture the of food and drinks, as the fringe performances
hearts of fellow Singaporeans and friends residing overseas. provide you with a visual feast.
Fast becoming the city’s favourite festival stage, Marina Bay provides a The whole host of activities will no doubt
perfect setting against the signature city skyline to stage and enjoy large-scale satisfy your appetite for entertainment till
cultural and community events, water-based sports and celebrations. Active the break of dawn – this is Asia’s Grooviest
programming of events will bring iconic events to Marina Bay all year round, beach party you cannot miss!
establishing it as a Bay of Celebration with exciting activities for everyone
to enjoy. TICKET PRICE: S$35 (incl. 1 free drink)
S$65 (including 2 free drinks and S$30 food
TICKET PRICE (EXCLUDE BOOKING FEE): Free, except for entry to The Float vouchers)
at Marina Bay (ticket prices tbc) DURATION: 10 hours
DURATION: 6 hours MORE INFORMATION: http://www.sentosa.

singapore amsterdam san francisco istanbul cruise on location and soon london & los angeles

supperclub singapore is is a multi-sensory experience that brings together about formal dining etiquette since freedom is the key word here. You
fine cuisine, art, performance and djs in one unique location. Join us for will lie down, relax and dine on oversized beds and, as you are being
just a drink or a dinner, always followed by a club night with the best served you will enjoy excellent food, djs, unique performances and art.
national and international djs.
Dining at supperclub is different. you can choose a surprise menu which dinner & table reservations call 6334 4080 or go to
changes every week or go for the delicious finger food items. Forget odeon towers, 331 north bridge road

show this ad and receive 15% off on food or complimentary entrance on one of our club nights* *(t&c apply)
Conference Calendar

A selection of upcoming conferences in the region in January/February:

GIS in Oil & Gas 2010 Shipping Finance Asia 2010

18-19 January, Dubai 3-4 February, Singapore

Pharmacovigilance 2010 3rd Annual Investment Performance Analysis

21 January, Mumbai
& Risk Management Asia 2010
3-4 February, Hong Kong

Pharma Sales Force Effectiveness Conference

25-27 January, Singapore Innovations in Healthcare Management and
8-11 February, Singapore
3rd Annual Anti-Corruption Asia Congress
25-28 January, Hong Kong
Data Centre Management 2010
9-10 February, Melbourne
HSE Risk Management in Oil & Gas
26–27 January, Kuala Lumpur
Regional Airport Development
Contact Centres Asia 2010 10-12 February, Sydney

26-27 January, Singapore

Pipeline Integrity Management
Prepaid Mobile Summit 2010 17-18 February, Melbourne

26-27 January, Kuala Lumpur

Airport Security 2010

TradeTech China 17-20 February, Dubai

28-29 January, Shanghai

5th Annual Asset Integrity Management

Global Worldnet Conference 2010 Summit
21-24 February, Abu Dhabi
31 January – 4 February, Mumbai

Log on to for more information on these and many other events.
And remember, you can make a bid and decide the price you’re willing to pay for any
conference you wish to attend, not just the ones listed on Conference Bay! Just contact us
on +65 67357445.

Vol.19 • No. 10 • December 2009 / January 2010
Embassy Info

Embassy closed The Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands will be closed from Friday
25 December 2009 until Friday 1 January 2010.

In case of an emergency, please contact the duty officer on HP: 9661 5704.

With respect to the closure of our financial year only cash payments can be accepted
at the consular counter from 14-31 December 2009. It will not be possible to use our
credit card facility.

The visa application section will be closed from Monday 21 December 2009 until
Friday 1 January 2010.

Association Info

Job Seekers / Internship

Name : Frank C.T. Bussen Looking for: An internship position for a four-month period
Age : 40 starting in February 2010 to gain international working experience
Mobile : +31 6 5049 8881 in Singapore. I do not have a preference for a specific position
Email : or industry. I think it would be a great experience and challenge
to get the opportunity to transfer the theoretical knowledge I
Study: Degree in Aeronautical Engineering (Bachelor) gained during my studies into practice.

Specialization: Aeronautical Engineering, Customer Service

Name : Michiel Sengers
Working experience: 5 years experience in Logistical Age : 26
Support and Customer Service at KLM and Fokker Services. Tel. no. : +65 66990767 (H), +65 91272770 (HP)
Supporting fleet operations, and serving as first contact Website :
between customer and logistics. This includes Spares handling,
Repairs handling, Financial control, Quote hunting and problem Study:
solving. Sep 02 - Feb 07: Amsterdam School of Business (HES), Marketing,
Bachelor of Marketing
Looking for: A challenging job position, preferably in the Airline
Industry but also willing to change into new directions. A job Specialization: Product management, Market research and
where I can show my inventiveness, creativity and drive and in Travel retail
which I can be an asset to increase the business.
Characteristics: Team player, involved, outgoing, creative,
hands-on, strategic, analytical, IT savvy
Name : Rudrani Djwalapersad
Age : 23 Working experience: : +31 6 5054 3020 – Jun 08 – Dec 08: Martinair Holland N.V. – Product Specialist:
Email : responsible for both service and sales concepts; additionally
manage in-flight shop, supplier management, catalogue
Study: design, operations support.
• Sep ’08 – Jan ’10: Master Financial Law, Erasmus University – Mar 07 – May 08: Martinair Holland N.V. - Service Concept
Rotterdam. Manager: responsible for service concept; manage, develop
• Sep ’07 – Dec ’08: MSc Business Admnistration: Management and improve on-board service product (F&B, entertainment)
of Change, Erasmus University Rotterdam, graduated with to optimize passenger satisfaction.
honor. – Sep 06 – Feb 07: Martinair Holland N.V. - Product Management
• Sep ’04 – Jun ’07: BSc Business Administration, Erasmus Internship: thesis on brand association in the airline
University Rotterdam. industry
– Feb 05 – Aug 06: SBS Broadcasting S.A. – Pricing Assistant:
Working experience: perform marketing and market research activities
- Feb ’09 – Sep ’09: Research Assistant at the faculty Erasmus
School of Law. Looking for: A position in marketing or marketing communications.
- Aug ’07 – Sep ’08: Chairman of the Master Study Club Board Preferred industries; travel, tourism, media and open to others.
Management of Change, Study Association STAR. Contributing to an international team with marketing, market
- Oct ’06 – Jun ’07: Chairman of the BA Study Trip Committee, research and product management experience and knowledge.
Study Association STAR. Ideally full time. Long term. Local terms

Vol.19 • No. 10 • December 2009 / January 2010
Association Info


Anne Elias, ING Bank The ADB members are invited to join ADB’s
Francoise Roche, Rabobank ‘Eindejaars Netwerkborrel’
Frans Janssen, GfK Asia
Date: Thursday 10 December 2009 Time: 20.00-22.00 hrs Venue: 8 Binjai Hill
Fred Neve, RBS Bank
Registration is required, please register before 6 December 2009 by sending
Koos Alfrink, ING Bank
an email to
Kris Vervaeke, Kris Vervaeke Photography
Marleen de Bruijn, ING Bank Limited parking available.
Michael Krayenhoff, AQ Services
Michiel Sengers (1/1) Kindly sponsored by:
Roderick Kasteel, ABN AMRO Bank
Rogier Dolleman, ING Bank JANUARY EVENT
Rosiah van den Hoek
Sara Verhof (1/1) Dear ADB Members,
You and your partner are kindly invited to attend the
Vincent Groenewoud (1/1)
Wietse Roodenburg, Shell
Wilco Alberda, Smit
ADB New Year’s ‘borrel’
on Monday 11 January 2010

Leaving Members Ambassador Johannes Jansing and Mrs. Barbara Jansing are kindly
hosting the ‘borrel’ at their residence from 19:00-21:00 hrs.
Anne Elias, ING Bank
If you would like to attend, please register by 6 January via
Bert Hazelaar, Shell (limited registration)
Clementine Klijberg
Cornelis van den Muyzenberg, Colorcon Address: 23 Ridout Road (please park at Dempsey car park)
Dress code: Smart Casual
Edwin Ebrahimi, Vopak
Ernst Altena, Van Leeuwen Buizen
Freek van Velsen, RBS Kindly sponsored by:
Frits Wolters, Shell
Geert Kraak, De Lage Landen
Gjalt Jan Feersma Hoekstra, I.M. Freight MEMBERSHIP FEE 2010
Dear ADB Member,
Hans Rijfkogel, Agio Cigars
The ADB will start the process of collecting next year’s membership fee. We are
Inge Oostendorp, Hollandse Club happy to inform you that the ADB is still able to keep the calendar membership fee
Ingmar de Gooijer, Burson-Marsteller at SGD100 only.
Kiki van der Erf Attached please find the annual invoice for the ADB membership fee for 2010 and
Laurence Caron we kindly ask you herewith to arrange payment at your earliest convenience at the
latest by the 31st of December 2009:
Lukas van der Hoef, Deutsche Bank
1. By crossed cheque made payable to: “Association of Dutch Businessmen”, and
Mark Woudstra* send your cheque to Association of Dutch Businessmen, c/o 22 Camden Park
Marleen de Bruijn, ING Bank Singapore 299814
Please state your name on cheque.
Michael van Ommeren, Fortis
Monique van Donzel 2. In cash and send/deliver to/at for the attention of ADB, c/o 22 Camden Park,
Singapore 299814
Ninna Liu , Agio Cigars
3. By internet
Orhan Koc* Bank name : Standard Chartered Bank, Battery Road
Pim Kraan, Embassy of the Kingdom of the Benificiary : Association of Dutch Businessmen
Netherlands Account # : 01-0-837759-8
Branch : 001
Rob de Louw, Océ
Bank code : 7144
Roderick Kasteel, ABN AMRO Bank Please make sure that your name will be stated on our bank statement.
Ronald Broer, Unitor Your prompt payment will be appreciated.
Sebastiaan Reek, RBS N.B.: Cancellation of your membership must be received in writing (by email) before
Stefan Beukeveld, BHP Billiton the 31st of December 2009, otherwise full membership fee (SGD 100) will apply for
calendar year 2010!
Thijs Fransen

Vol.19 • No. 10 • December 2009 / January 2010


Hollandse Club


The common misperception held about the Hollandse Club is that you
have to be Dutch to become a member, but as only 25 per cent of
our members are from the Netherlands, you definitely don’t have to be

Whichever nationality you are, we welcome you with open arms into our
child-friendly, couple-friendly and cosy club. The Hollandse Club is a little
bit of country in the sprawling city, and yet so easily accessible from the
centre of town.

So don’t fight for dining space in Dempsey, elbow room in Boat Quay
or breathing space in Orchard Road. Instead, hang out at the Hollandse
Club and enrich your social life, improve your sporting prowess and treat
your taste buds.

For information about becoming a member, call the membership

department on 6461 1111 or 6461 1104.


r ved

Finally, a dimmable energy saver –

because no two moments are the same.

Whatever light level you desire, the Philips Tornado

Dimmable delivers. Dimming smoothly down to 5%
brightness, it also saves energy by up to 80%.
Experiment with the possibilities, and bring out the
best in any moment.