Monday, September 7, 2009 | By: Rudi Butt

Chairmen Of Chamber Of Commerce

Updated (partial) on 10/28/2009

The Chamber of Commerce of Hong Kong was founded in 1861 with 62 members. The inaugural Chairman was Alexander Percival [1] of Jardine, Matheson & Co. Mirroring the composition of the mercantile community in that era, opium merchants can be found in the very core of the Chamber: - they nearly filled up one third of the Founding Member roster [2] and where their successors, although some of them were no longer actively engaged in opium dealings, continued to steer the Chamber as its chairmen for a total of 27 years in half a century pursuant to its establishment. The Taipans of Jardine, Matheson and Co. alone held the chair position for 12 years. And, out of these 12 years, 5 were occupied by William Keswick [3], i.e. 1870, 1877, 1881, 1884 and 1885.

The longest serving Chairman was E A Hewett, Chairman of Peninsular and Oriental Steam Navigation Company (P&O), who served for 12 years consecutively from 1903.

In 1982, Jack Tang (唐驥千) of South Seas Textile Manufacturing Company Ltd. was elected Vice Chairman, the first one of Chinese origin in the 121 years history of the chamber. Tang went on to become the first Chinese Chairman in 1984. Tang is the uncle of Henry Tang (唐英年), the current Chief Secretary of Hong Kong Government.

Lily Chiang (1961- )(蔣麗莉) of Eco-Tek Holdings became the first woman Chairperson in 2007 after serving as Deputy-Chairperson for the previous 2 years.

Honors: Ten Outstanding Young Persons in Hong Kong 1999; Outstanding Woman in the Scientific / Technology Sector 2001; The Future Leader in China in the Financial Sector 2003; The Most Creative Chinese Business Leader 2005

Positions: Vocational Training Council Member 1998-2002; Town Planning Board Member 2004-2008; Hospital Authority Member 2001-2005; Election Committee Com(1st)Commercial (First) sub-sector 1998; Barristers Disciplinary Tribunal Panel Member 2005-2010, ... etc.

On January 8, 2008 the Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC)brought charges against the celebrated Chiang in connection with an alleged $7.5 million share-option fraud. Lily Chiang made applications for two judicial reviews in March 2009, with the view to have a trial of her case by jury - a move that might increase her odds in winning. In the Judgment handed down on September 21, 2009, both appeals were dismissed by a three-judges panel in the Court of Appeal.
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[1] Alexander Percival; 7th Taipan of Jardine, Matheson & Co.; a relative of James Matheson's wife, Matheson who, together with William Jardine, are founders of Jardine, Matheson & Co.; Senior Unofficial Member of the Legislative Council from 1861 to 1864. The Percival Street in Causeway is named after him.

[2] Founding Members of the General Chamber of Commerce of Hong Kong

1.Jardine Matheson & Co (British), opium dealer
2.Dent & Co (British), opium dealer
3.Turner & Co (British), opium dealer
4.Russell & Co (American), opium dealer
5.The Oriental Bank Corporation
6.Gibb Livingston & Co (British), opium dealer
7.Gilman & Co (British)
8.Johnson & Co (Probably British)
9.Lindsay & Co (British), opium dealer
10.Fletcher & Co (British)
11.Smith Kennedy & Co (British)
12.The Chartered Mercantile Bank of India, London & China
13.Augustine Heard & Co (American), opium dealer
14.Birley & Co (British)
15.The Commercial Bank of India
16.The Agra & United Service Bank
17.Siemssen & Co (German)
18.Bull Purdon & Co (American)
19.A. Ellissen & Co (Probably British)
20.Gifford & Co (Probably British)
21.Wetmore Cryder & Co (American), opium dealer
22.Vaucher Freres (French)
23.Koopmanochap & Bosman (Nationality not certain)
24.Olyphant & Co (American)
25.Wm Pustau & Co (German)
26.N. Duus & Co (Danish)
27.Phillips Moore & Co (British)
28.Holliday Wise & Co (British), opium dealer
29.Alfred Wilkinson & Co (Probably British)
30.Lyall Still & Co 孻也洋行 (British), opium dealer
31.Bourjeau Hubener & Co (German)
32.D. W. MacKenzie & Co (Probably British)
33.Schaeffer & Co (German)
34.Edward Gassett (Nationality not certain)
35.Douglas Lapraik (British), opium dealer
36.Nowrojee & Co (Parsee), opium dealer
37.R. H. Camajee & Co (Parsee), opium dealer
38.P. & D. N. Camajee & Co (Parsee), opium dealer
39.P. F. Cama & Co (Parsee), opium dealer
40.D. N. Mody & Co (Parsee), opium dealer
41.Eduljee Framjee Sons & Co (Parsee)
42.F. B. Cama & Co (Parsee)
43.Ruttonjee Framjee Vacha & Co (Parsee)
44.Jairaz Fazul & Co (Indian)
45.Cassumbhoy Nathabhoy Sons & Co (Indian), opium dealer
46.Ameeroodeen Jaffeerbhoy & Co (Indian), opium dealer
47.Jamsetjee Ardasir & Co (Parsee)
48.The Chartered Bank of India, Australia & China
49.Walker Borradaile & Co (probably British)
50.R. McGregor & Co (Probably British)
51.Oxford & Co (Probably British)
52.Smith Archer & Co (American)
53.David Sassoon Sons & Co (Jewish), opium dealer
54.Granville Sharp (British)
55.M. Pestonjee Setna (Parsee)
56.Peerbhoy Rowjee Esq (Parsee)
57.Nanjabhoy Sozon (Probably Parsee)
58.Adam Scott & Co of Canton (British)
59.Reiss & Co of Canton (British)
60.Margesson & Co of Canton (Nationality not certain)
61.John Burd & Co (Danish)
62.Stephenson & Co (British)

[3] William Keswick (1835-1912); MP for Epsom & Ewell 1899-1912; grandson of Margaret Jardine Johnstone - the elder sister of Dr. William Jardine, founder of Jardine, Matheson & Co.; 9th Taipan of Jardine, Matheson & Co., founder of the Keswick family; became a London director of Hong Kong and Shanghai Banking Corp. (1877- ?) starting a close relation between the trading house and the bank; a member of the Legislative and Executive Councils

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