Tuesday, November 9, 2010
Day 1 of running around in parallel to the Prime Minister's programme. Cameron arrived in Beijing this morning with a plane load of business leaders and press. Two of the former included Sir Mark Jones, Director of the V&A, and Neil MacGregor, Director of the British Museum, and it's these two - together with a group of senior Chinese arts contacts - who are occupying my time today. Who would have thought that a lunch would be so complicated and take so long to organize? Anyway, it went smoothly and Lu Zhangshen, Director of the National Museum of China, was on good form, waxing lyrically and expertly about Maotai, China's No.1 drink for state banquets. There's a big affair at the Great Hall of the People tonight so doubtless Cameron, like Nixon in '72, will be imbibing.