On Sept. 24, 2019, the article of Philanthropy in China "Draws Lessons" from Italy was published in Reference News. It cited the interview by the South China Morning Post with Wang Zhenyao, President of China Global Philanthropy Institute and China Philanthropy Research Institute on Sept. 22, and pointed out that Chinese philanthropists and international organizations were developing philanthropy and carrying out cooperation. In the history of philanthropy in China, it's unprecedented for state leaders to witness an agreement reached by nongovernmental organizations. Italian experience is worth "studying for a long time".
The full text in Reference News is as follows
[Hong Kong South China Morning Post reports on Sept. 22] Can China's newly rich learn something from Italy about philanthropy?
Italian charities and foundations with a history of hundreds of years have a new goal: Help China's newly rich learn how to repay society.
Some experts said that the European country has become a case China's rich people are interested in, because the tradition of family intergenerational business management is deeply rooted in cultures of both countries.
This Mar., Chairman Xi Jinping paid a visit to Rome and witnessed the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding on the Establishment of Sino-Italian Philanthropy Forum with Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte. Some Italians quickly seized the opportunity of political significance.
the signing ceremony at the scene
Wang Zhenyao, President of China Global Philanthropy Institute and China Philanthropy Research Institute of Beijing Normal University, said after his recent visit to Italy: "In the history of philanthropy in China, it's unprecedented for state leaders to witness an agreement reached by nongovernmental organizations."
He said that Italian experience would be a topic worth "studying for a long time" by rich people in China.
He said: "European philanthropy is closely related to social welfare and social service, which is hard to imagine by Chinese people. We need to study how European family charities and foundations with a history of hundreds of years play a leading role in the sharing of European policies."
Wang Zhenyao said about the current situation of philanthropy in China: "Our professional level in philanthropy is relatively low. The link between philanthropy and social service is also very weak."
Wang Zhenyao, President of China Global Philanthropy Institute, attended the Sino-Italian Philanthropy Forum
Niu Gensheng, founder of Mengniu Dairy Group and sponsor of China Global Philanthropy Institute, visited the Forum with Wang Zhenyao. Niu Gensheng took money from his property and built Laoniu Foundation, which aims at improving education and the environment in China.
Mr. Prodi, Co-Chairman of Sino-Italian Philanthropy Forum, awarded the certificate of honor of "Global Philanthropy Joint Action Ambassador" to Mr. Niu Gensheng, founder of Laoniu Foundation, Inner Mongolia and Co-Chairman of East-West Philanthropy Forum
They also paid a visit to Fondazione Zegna named after Zegna, an Italian luxury fashion company.
In the past 40 years since the late Chinese leader Deng Xiaoping pursued the policy of reform and opening up, private wealth has soared. A report released by the Rockefeller Foundation (USA) in Apr. said that China's philanthropy was rapidly growing into an engine that promotes development at home and abroad. The scale of philanthropy in China has quadrupled since 2009.
Charity Law was adopted in China in 2016. According to Wang Zhenyao, there have been more than 800,000 social organizations and nearly 10 million employees in China.
Dr. Rajiv Shah, President of the Rockefeller Foundation, said in the report that only 1% of the foundations in China provided financial aid. Their money can be very influential.
According to Shah: "This means that Chinese philanthropists and international organizations have opportunities to develop philanthropy and carry out cooperation."
Professor Giovanni Andornino also participated in the signing of the memorandum witnessed by Chairman Xi Jinping. He is now working at Sino-Italian Philanthropy Forum. According to Andornino, with the increasing globalization of Chinese enterprises, their philanthropy projects shall also be more global.
Andornino said: "Philanthropists in China are working hard to make sure that sponsors and managers of the next generation of foundations are able to master expertise and build an international network, so that huge and growing resources in their hands can maximize their influence at home and abroad." He also said that they are well aware that it's necessary to be in touch with examples of international best practices.