The British Chamber of Commerce Shanghai extends back to 1915. As the First World War was escalating, 10 British firms met at the British Consulate-General in May, 1915, to discuss how to protect British interests and prevent trade between China and Britain's WWI opponents. One week later, the British Chamber of Commerce, Shanghai was established with a total of 60 members. By the end of 1916, its membership had grown to 250.
Though originally thought to be a temporary wartime measure, the Chamber continued to operate through till the late 1930s when the outbreak of the Sino-Japanese and Second World War necessitated its closure.
Another organisation representing British business interests in the Pearl River Delta was not established until 1985 with the formation of the British Business Association, which evolved into the current British Chamber of Commerce Shanghai in 1995. In the 16 years since, the Chamber has steadfastly supported British commerce in Shanghai and the East China region. The Chamber's exclusive 1915 Club continues to celebrate the long heritage of The British Chamber of Commerce in Shanghai.
The Chamber is now part of a network of British Chambers of Commerce in China (BCCC) including chambers in Beijing, Chengdu, Chongqing, Guangzhou and Hong Kong. The Chamber is also part of Britain in Asia Pacific (BiAP), an organisation of more than 20 British Chambers of Commerce and business association in the Asia-Pacific Region.