The EU-China Business and Technology Cooperation Fair to power common growth
Experts gather at a roundtable meeting during the 2019 EU-China Business and Technology Cooperation Fair in Chengdu, Sichuan province. (Photo provided to China Daily)

The 16th EU-China Business and Technology Cooperation Fair will further help China share its market opportunities with European countries amid its opening-up efforts and assist the two sides to complement each other and achieve common growth, business leaders said on last Thursday.

The event, to be held in Chengdu, Sichuan province, from Sept 17 to Sept 19 and co-hosted by the China Chamber of International Commerce and European Union Chamber of Commerce in China, is one of the largest business activities between the European Union and China.

As one of the main activities of the 18th Western China International Fair, the EU-China Fair will build a platform for participants from China and Europe to exchange ideas and conduct business activities with their counterparts, the organizers said.

Entrepreneurs, government officials and experts will gather in the Chengdu-based Business and Innovation Center of China-Europe Cooperation this month to share their views with 500 attendees on commercial topics between China and the EU. This would include the digital economy, energy transition and urban green development, investment and legal services, geographical indication, vocational education, and other areas.

Zhao Ping, deputy head of Beijing-based Academy of China Council for the Promotion of International Trade, said the fair will help boost imports from European countries, advance trade and economic cooperation between China and Europe, and serve the needs of China’s expanding consumption market.

Thanks to the complementary industrial structures between China and the EU, and booming China-Europe freight train services, China replaced the United States as the EU’s largest trade partner in the third quarter last year, reflecting the resilience and potential of bilateral economic and trade ties, according to information released by the Ministry of Commerce.

China’s foreign trade with the EU soared 23.4 percent year-on-year to 2.96 trillion yuan ($458.21 billion) from January to July this year, accounting for 13.9 of its total foreign trade volume, data from the General Administration of Customs showed.

European and Chinese business leaders said the enhanced ties between the two sides have developed a number of principles that are reflective of the respective distinctive features and accepted by all parties, such as making decisions through consultation, delivering benefits to all cooperation partners, pursuing common growth through openness and inclusiveness, and achieving better growth through innovation.

Backed by an investment of 140 million yuan, Germany’s Merck Group will start operating an electronics technology center in Shanghai in the first half of 2022, providing technology solutions and materials to the semiconductor industry to drive its growth.

From personal computers, smartphones, televisions to wearable electronics, China has become the world’s largest producer and consumer of a wide range of consumer electronics, said Anand Nambiar, head of Semiconductor Materials of Merck Electronics, a unit of the German group.

“We believe that a golden age for China’s semiconductor industry has just begun-no doubt the fastest growing market in the coming decade,” he said, adding semiconductor solutions have also become one of the company’s largest and fastest growing businesses in China.

It will step up efforts to further invest and build local capabilities and expand local capacity in this area in China in the coming years.

Eager to expand its presence in Europe, China Unicom, a telecom provider, has opened a branch in Austria this year to expand its presence in the country. It will pay particular attention to human, financial and material resources to better serve the demands of local and Chinese companies in Central and Eastern European countries.

Liu Meijue, China Unicom’s head for Austria and the Czech Republic, said the company is optimistic about the business environment in Austria, one of the most economically stable countries in the world, as well as the surrounding economies in the region.