China offers great opportunities for Europe in thoracic surgery training and research. Thoracic surgeons from Europe might profit from intense collaborations and on the other hand provide assist in academic structures, creating guidelines and patient follow-up strategies. With an observership award the AME Publishing Group and the ESTS enable another unique kind of collaboration for thoracic surgery trainees. This year the observership allows a bridge between Zurich in Switzerland and Beijing in China. The current situation of thoracic surgery in Switzerland and the chances of collaboration are discussed in this opinion paper.