On 25 January 2020, the first day of the Lunar New Year, more than 500 distinguished guests ushered in the Year of the Rat with Mr Ong Ye Kung, Minister for Education, Business China Adviser, at the Spring Reception 2020.
Jointly organised by Business China and the Singapore Chinese Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SCCCI), the Spring Reception was held at the Trade Association Hub in Jurong Town Hall. The organisers had the honour of Guest-of-Honour Minister Ong Ye Kung, Minister Chan Chun Sing, SMS Sim Ann, SPS Low Yen Ling, Business China CEO Ms Tin Pei Ling and foreign dignitaries to join in the festivities.
The celebration kick-started with a grand traditional lion dance performance in welcoming in the Year of the Rat, creating a lively and festive atmosphere. Following after, Business China Board Director and SCCCI President Mr Roland Ng was invited to give his opening address. He shared in his speech that racial harmony and cultural integration were the vital cornerstones that would ensure the sustainable development of the Singapore culture and our continued prosperity; thus, SCCCI would actively promote the Chinese entrepreneurial culture with "harmony in diversity" as the foundation.
Business China Chairman Mr Lee Yi Shyan said in his opening address that Business China and Singapore Chinese Chamber of Commerce & Industry (SCCCI) have not only worked together for Spring Reception 2020 but both organisations would also embark on various collaboration to create a win-win situation to benefit both parties.
Mr Lee also took the opportunity to express his warmest gratitude to SCCCI for supporting Business China in the past 13 years. He said that Business China and SCCCI have a built a strong relationship thus far and this would continue to strengthen in the years to come. In his speech, Mr Lee reiterated Business China’s 3 strategic objectives in moving forward: (1) Nurture Singapore-China-savvy talents, (2) Grow premium SG-CN network of influencers, (3) Develop deep & wide-ranging relationships and strengthen commitment to Business China. He also gave an update on the Youth Interns Exchange Scheme (YES) programme as well as other key programmes of Business China such as the Advanced Leaders Programme (ALP) and Future China Global Forum (FCGF).
In his keynote speech, Minister Ong said that the significance of Chinese New Year lies in the values embedded in our cultures, and are manifested in the traditions and rituals we observe, through the festivities we celebrate. He stressed that the harmony we enjoyed in Singapore was due to everyone’s shared belief in unity amidst diversity. He also touched on the various government policies that prepare Singaporeans for the future and make life better for everyone.
Highlights of this year’s performances included sand art by Malay artist Imran and Chinese orchestra performance by EM ensemble. The guests were in high spirits and sent well wishes to one another for the Chinese New Year. Minister Ong was subsequently invited to tour the cultural exhibition booths set up for the occasion.
The Spring Reception is an annual event for the Chinese community leaders in Singapore to gather and exchange well-wishes and renew their camaraderie for the New Year. It is also a platform to promote the appreciation of Chinese language, culture and traditional values.
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