One founding member of the European Chamber went on to serve as its president for four terms spanning over a decade and a half, all while balancing an enormous workload, dividing his time between Chamber tasks and his day-job as the head of BASF in Beijing. After stepping down as Chamber president in May, he left big shoes to fill, as well as a legacy that will carry on informing the development of business ties between the EU and China for years to come.
In this episode, our host Mariann Nagy, policy and communications manager at the European Chamber, sat down with President Emeritus Joerg Wuttke to look back at his prolific work at the Chamber and the future he envisages for the organisation at a time when EU-China relations are at a critical juncture.
What to listen for:
01:38 What aspects of the Chamber’s work are you most proud of?
03:28 Are there areas in which you think the Chamber can still make progress?
04:30How far do you go before dropping new ideas?
06:21 How did your most recent term as president compare with the previous ones?
08:24 Could you give some examples of how the Chamber moved the needle the most?
10:12 What was your process for preparing for high-level meetings given that you often only have limited time to deliver the Chamber’s messages?
11:22 Why has the Chamber been able to maintain such good access to both Chinese and European authorities?
12:46 Have you noticed any changes in how you were received by Chinese authorities over the years?
14:33 What are the reasons for the record number of thematic reports launched by the Chamber during your last presidency?
16:33 Which of the Chamber’s thematic papers were the most well-received during meetings with different stakeholders?
17:51 Which of the Chamber’s other publications did you find to be impactful?
20:20 How did you approach the task of conveying a unified message representing over 1,700 members?
22:14 What was your strategy for media engagement and what benefits does this strong media presence bring to the Chamber’s work?
24:07 Can you recall a Chamber event, or guest speaker, that left a particularly strong impression on you?
27:19 Did you ever feel isolated being the president of the European Chamber?
28:27 What will you miss most about working as president of the Chamber?
29:51 What is the biggest challenge that the Chamber now faces?
31:23 What advice would you give to your successor?
32:47 What does the future hold for you, now that you are relieved from your Chamber duties?
34:22 Now that you have more time to relax, what are some of the things you look forward to?
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