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From July 2nd to November 28th I was working as a trainee for German Industry and Commerce Hong Kong, South China and Vietnam. Their office is located in Lippo Centre, Tower I, which you can see below from various angles.

photo by Alexanderphoto by Alexander
More information about the Lippo Centre

Visitors to GIC/GCC, who have taken the ear-pressure-generating elevator to the 36th floor, are welcomed by GIC/GCC receptionist Ms. Anita Wong (left). - - As far as the interior design of the office is concerned please take a closer look at the photo in the middle. It looks nice indeed but the PCs were not the most stable companions. Before I moved to another PC, my computer crashed a record of over thirty times a day (I kept track of it) and more than once, crashed documents were not recoverable. After moving to a another PC, things improved a great deal, though. Thank God! - - From the inside of the office you can also look outside (who would have guessed that) and enjoy stunning views across Hong Kong's Victoria Harbour. (right)

photo by Barbaraphoto by Alexanderphoto by Alexander

German Industry and Commerce in Hong Kong, one of 117 AHK offices in over 80 countries in the world, is relying very much on trainees to get the day to day work done. Hence, it is not rare that there are up to six trainees at a time. With each trainee staying four to six months, there are obviously quite a number of trainees who work for GIC/GCC in Hong Kong year round which is both positive and negative at the same time i.e. staff trainee routine vs. a great peer group. In my first month at GIC/GCC, my fellow trainees were Barbara (survey, mediation), Sophie (my GC.comm predecessor) and Marcel (national tourist office) who started on the same day that I did. - - For the last four months, Henry (now a full-time employee), Alexander (survey), Daniela (mediation), Marzena (trade fair services) and still Marcel were my co-trainees. And I am sure that I will keep in touch with some of them in Germany.

photo by Barbaraphoto by AHK

As a trainee I was for the most part in charge of GC.comm, the GIC/GCC monthly business magazine but I contributed to the 2003/04 Annual Report, translated a few documents into English and German and interpreted for a German business man during the Gifts and Premium Trade Fair in Hong Hong in July and October and during a plant visit with a potential business partner.
According to the contract my responsibilities included:
...Planning the theme story and content of future issues
...Working on the overall structure and page layout of each issue
...Writing business-related articles
...Managing the work flow among trainees and colleagues who contribute
   articles for the next issue
...Keeping contact with advertisers
...Supervising data filing

My GC.comm articles

All the other articles of the September, October, November and December issues are also available for download from the AHK website (most notably those of Angela (my best friend) and Daniela (my fellow trainee and friend) who both contributed to the December issue).

photo by AHK

Given the nature of my internship, I worked together with the Manager of Publications, i.e. Monica. I really enjoyed working with her and would not have preferred anyone else in her stead - at least that's my feeling. (photo on the left) - - On the photo in the middle you can see Karen (membership) and Venus (administation), the latter now being responsible for selecting future trainees (in case you consider applying for an intership there). - - To the right, Chief Executive Mr. Goetting, who was almost always on a business trip or meeting while I was in Hong Kong and his two executive managers Sabine (in charge of the Guangzhou office) and Ute (responsible for me at a higher level and a nice person).

photo by AHKphoto by AHK

While I was a trainee in Hong Kong, there were two major AHK events both of which took place in September: the reception for German president Johannes Rau (left) and the 20th anniversary gala evening (right). But there have also been small everyday highlights: a fresh kiwi juice, a fruit salad and the best express checkout shop assistant: W.S. Shum. Park'n'Shop should give her a wage increase or at least select her employee of the month)! (below)

photo by Henryphoto by Henryphoto by Henry

If I were to decide again on whether to do this internship at GIC Hong Kong based on my past experience I would not have to think twice. I had a great time there - both at work and off work. The staff has overall been really friendly and I think I learned quite a few things there as well. If you have any further questions about the intership or the city drop me a line.

One last tip: GIC/GCC (AHK) Hong Kong is also keeping a list of other German firms (including contact details) who offer / or have offered internships in the past. If you are interested to obtain the list, send an e-mail to

Last but not least some of the links below might be helpful to you as well.

German Industry & Commerce/ German Chamber of Commerce

The GIC/GCC Hong Kong Trainee Community
The GIC/GCC Job & Internship Market
E-Fellows: Praxiserfahrung im Reich der Mitte
International Placement Center Darmstadt
Council on International Internship Placements e.V.
The Economist: Business Etiquette
Internship Report / Praktikumsbericht Bayer by Bernhard, 1998
Internship Report / Praktikumsbericht Otto International by Jochen, 1998/ 1999
Internship Report / Praktikumsbericht Debis - Daimler-Chrysler by Daniel, 1999
Internship Report / Praktikumsbericht Robert Bosch Co Ltd by Stefan, 2000
Internship Report / Praktikumsbericht Nomura Bank by Björn, 2001
Internship Report / Praktikumsbericht BASF by Ole, 2001

Internship Report / Praktikumsbericht MTO by Reimar, 2003

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