MUNICH/CHENGDU Bavaria’s Minister of Economic Affairs Franz Josef Pschierer travelled to Chengdu, the capital of the Chinese province Sichuan, with a delegation of thirty for four days. The Minister is being accompanied by a delegation consisting of representatives from companies in the electronics industry, mechanical engineering, hospital construction and environmental technology. The companies want to establish and intensify contacts and benefit from the experiences of companies already working in China. Pschierer: “We want to tap into new fields of collaboration. Our political and economic relations are both close and friendly. The bilateral trade volume has continuously increased over the last few years. With a trade volume of over EUR 31 billion, China is our second most important trade partner in the world. China was in fact in first place in the first quarter of 2018 with a trade volume of EUR 8.2 billion. Which is why mutual economic exchange with China will enjoy high priority in Bavarian foreign trade policy in future too.”
Pschierer is opening the third Bavarian representative office in Chengdu. Bavaria has more representative offices in China than in any other country in the world. The first representative office was already opened in 1997, followed by the second one in Shenzhen, Guangdong in 2013. “Chengdu is not just the starting point to the “new silk road” but undoubtedly a boom region in western China. I am convinced that the exchange and collaboration between our countries will be even more intensive and easier thanks to our new representative office: for our Bavarian companies who want to take the step into business in China and for the Chinese companies who want to do business with Bavaria or invest here,” says Pschierer. With the train link between Chengdu and Nuremberg, there is already a direct link between Bavaria and China today with roughly 100 trains a year. Bavaria can continue establishing itself as the hub between the East and West with Chengdu as the starting point.
The Bavarian Minister of Economic Affairs is also going to meet with the Vice Governor of Sichuan Zhu Hexin province and the Vice Mayor of the LIU Xiaoliu city with 15 million inhabitants for political talks. A visit to the Hyperloop test track and exchange with its research team is also on the agenda. Pschierer wants to make the case for equal, fair competitive conditions for Bavarian companies in China. These include adapting the investment conditions. Pschierer: “I am convinced that both sides benefit from open markets with fair competition and free access – it’s a real win-win situation. We stand by free trade. Especially in times when protectionism and punitive tariffs are being applied elsewhere, this sets the right and an important signal. I am really happy that we are pulling together with China here. At the same time, we hope that China works faster and more consistently on implementing this shared goal.”
Bavarian companies invested more than EUR 22 billion in China by the end of 2016, that’s just under 30 percent of all German investments and 12 percent more than the year before. Bavarian companies are involved in 472 companies in China with 187,000 employees and an annual turnover of just under EUR 80 billion. In return, Chinese companies were involved in 24 Bavarian companies with 5,000 employees in total and an annual turnover of just under EUR one billion by the end of 2016.