Global Challenges,

Local Answers.

International Relations and Economic Diplomacy.

We engage German leaders from politics, associations, and the private sector with foreign diplomats to explain and discuss different perspectives on current issues of European and global policy, FDI, trade, and innovation.

Steering Committee

Maximilian Hoffmann


– President and CEO, Foreign Council On Economic Relations (2022 – Present)
– Executive Chairman and Secretary-General, Foreign Council On Economic Relations (2019 – 2022)
– Deputy-Spokesperson of the Executive Board, Alliance of Associations (2020 – Present)
– Secretary-General, Federal Business Associations of Germany and the Gulf Cooperation Council (2016 – 2019)
– Chairman, German Partner (2017 – 2018)
– Member of the Board of Directors, Federal Association of German Business in Ukraine (2008 – 2016)

Alexander Kulitz, MdB a.D.

Chairman of the Steering Committee

– Chairman of the Steering Committee, Foreign Council On Economic Relations (2021 – Present)
– Member of the Executive Board, China Brücke (2020 – Present)
– Member, German Federal Parliament / Bundestag, FDP (2017 – 2021)
– Member, Foreign Affairs Committee, German Bundestag (2018 – 2021)
– Deputy Chairman, Parliamentary Group for Relations with the ASEAN States German Bundestag (2018 – 2021)
– Federal Chairman, Junior Chamber of Commerce Germany WJD (2017 – 2018)

Torben Michael Theis

– Political Adviser (2013 – Present)
– Federal Deputy Secretary-General, CDU, Junge Union Germany  (2007 – 2013)
– Deputy Secretary-General, Junge Union, CDU Hessen (2006)
– Personal Adviser to Helge Braun MP, German Bundestag (2004-2005)

Matthias Bannas

– Director Communications, Federal Association of the Service Industry (2010 – Present)
– Chairman Berlin/Brandenburg, Federal Association of Communicators BdKom (2016 – 2020)

Andrej Gross

– Director Public Affairs Berlin, Deutsche Messe AG (2013-Present)

– General Manager, OOO Deutsche Messe Russia (2010-2013)


Our members are decision-makers, experts, and opinion leaders from politics, business, academia, tech, media, and culture.

With their outstanding expertise and resilient network across all sectors in Germany, they support our work, promote mutual understanding, and serve as high-level contacts for foreign diplomats and government officials on political and economic issues.

We are committed to better mutual understanding, fair trade, sustainability, multilateralism, and global prosperity.

Membership is by invitation only.