Roger ChenCarnival Corporation today announced that Roger Chen has been appointed chairman in China, effective January 1, 2016.

A native of China, Chen will be based in Shanghai and lead all government relations and port development, while also supporting the company’s joint ventures. In this new role, Chen will have responsibility for representing all of Carnival Corporation’s brands in China to continue growing the company’s industry-leading presence and scale in the region.

Chen will report directly to Alan Buckelew, chief operations officer for Carnival Corporation, who relocated to Shanghai in 2014 to oversee operations in China. Buckelew will continue to provide leadership to drive the company’s long-term growth plans in Asia. Michael Ungerer, recently named chief operations officer-shared services for Carnival Asia, continues in his strategic role to support growth across the brands in Asia, reporting to Michael Thamm, CEO of Costa Group, with a dotted line to Chen.

"Roger comes to us with over 25 years of experience working for major global companies that have significant operations in China, as well as time spent working within the Chinese government, all of which will be invaluable to our growth strategy in China and Asia as a whole," said Alan Buckelew, chief operations officer for Carnival Corporation. "We look forward to Roger’s leadership and deep knowledge of government affairs as he oversees Carnival Corporation’s strategic initiatives across all our brands in China, where we expect continued growth and expansion as the leading cruise operator in what has quickly become one of the fastest growing markets in the world.”

As a veteran leader in China, Chen’s background includes strong expertise in corporate and government affairs, and in-depth knowledge of the Chinese government’s policies and operations. Chen’s experience includes several senior positions where he led strategic efforts in China for major multi-national corporations, including General Electric, Microsoft, Volvo Group and Alcatel. Most recently, Chen served as China president for Volvo Group, representing the company’s interests across all business groups in China.

With the appointments of Roger Chen and Michael Ungerer, Carnival Corporation continues to bolster its Asia leadership team, which already includes veteran brand leaders Buhdy Bok, president of Costa Asia, and Anthony Kaufman, executive vice president, international operations for Princess Cruises. Among their overall responsibilities, Bok and Kaufman oversee operations in China for their respective brands, which currently anchor Carnival Corporation’s market-leading presence in China with four total ships.