BERLIN - HNA Group, a global Fortune 500 company focused on tourism, logistics and financial services, announced that Chen Feng, Chairman of the Board of Directors of HNA Group, attended the state banquet hosted by President Frank-Walter Steinmeier, at the Bellevue Palace in Berlin, on July 5.
The state banquet was part of a series of events organized in conjunction with President Xi Jinping's second state visit to Germany. The visit, which aims to cement ties between the two countries and push forward series of cooperation agreements, marks the 45th anniversary of the establishment of China-Germany diplomatic ties.
"I am honored to have been invited to the banquet and to have has the opportunity to speak with President Steinmeier and President Xi about the importance of deepening the bilateral ties between China and Germany," said Chairman Chen. "As a global company with Chinese roots, we believe constructive communication between China and Europe is essential to further boost global trade. HNA Group is committed to playing an important role in fostering economic growth everywhere we operate, as well as working to help promote the cultural ties between China and Germany. I am pleased to reaffirm HNA Group's commitment to further business development and investment activity in Germany and across Europe and we look forward to continuing to improve trade connectivity between China and this important global region."
HNA Group has played an important role in bringing two of the world's major economies closer together. In September 2008, Hainan Airlines, HNA Group's flagship carrier launched direct flights connecting Beijing and Berlin. Through June 2017, this route has served more than 570,000 passengers, supporting the people-to-people exchanges upon which strong, mutually beneficial business relationships are based.
In 2017 alone, HNA Group has made several significant investments in the German market, including acquiring an 82.5% shares of Frankfurt-Hahn Airport, which is located 125 kilometers away from Frankfurt, the biggest city of Hesse-Darmstadt. In May 2017, HNA Group became the largest shareholder of Deutsche Bank, one of the world's leading and Germany's largest financial services providers. China became Germany's largest trading partner for the first time last year, with bilateral trade volume between China and Germany exceeding $151 billion in 2016.
HNA Group's other major European assets include Avolon in the aircraft leasing sector, Swissport and Gategroup in airport and aviation services, and Carlson Rezidor in the hotels and tourism industry.