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Local mills, and lumber focus of delegation from China’s visit
On September 24th and 25th, the City of Cranbrook hosted a delegation from Taicang’s largest import and foreign trade company, the Jiangsu Wuyang Group. The eight person delegation was led by Mr. Zhongzhi Yang, Board Chairman of Jiangsu Wuyang Group Co. Ltd.
Established in 1990, the Jiangsu Wuyang Group began from a single focus of importing natural resources for textiles production. Today Jiangsu Wuyang Group is a large diversified company of 22 subsidiary enterprises with business covering domestic (China) and foreign trade, import and export, real estate development, finance and investment, and industrial manufacturing.
“Jiangsu Wuyang Group is a fascinating and progressive company that seems to build on the spirit of expedition embodied by Taicang’s famous Chinese navigator and explorer from 600 years ago Admiral Zheng He,” says Kevin Weaver, Business and Economic Development Manager for the City of Cranbrook. “Although their visit to Cranbrook was short, I look forward to working with Chairman Yang’s team as we explore the opportunities further.”
Jiangsu Wuyang Group’s primary interest during this visit was to research opportunities for exporting wood products to Taicang that could be used in some of their manufacturing processes.
City staff arranged meetings with the Ministry of Forests, Lands & Natural Resource Operations, Galloway Lumber and Canfor. The visit also included tours of the Tembec finger-jointing plant in Cranbrook, the Galloway Lumber mill and Canfor’s Elko mill.
Transportation options to get product to the west coast ports for export to China were a major concern for the Jiangsu Wuyang Group delegation. City staff is working with the Jiangsu Wuyang Group’s Vancouver-based advisors to provide additional information as a result of the meetings with our local forest product manufacturers.
Prior to the departure of Chairman Yang’s team Mayor Stetski hosted a dinner for the delegation at St. Eugene’s Resort. Joining the Mayor for the dinner was Mr. Jim Connelly, Chair of the City’s Economic Development Committee.
“Jiangsu Wuyang Group’s visit is a direct result of the city-to-city friendly relationship Cranbrook established in February 2012 with the port city of Taicang, China,” says Wayne Stetski, Mayor of Cranbrook. “More work will be needed to see if this new potential opportunity can become a reality for our local wood suppliers but this is a positive first step.”