Foreign representatives welcome more Chinese investors for win-win outcomes

Kuno Gschwend, chief investment officer of the Embassy of Switzerland to China, gives a presentation at a subforum of the 14th China Overseas Investment Fair in Beijing on May 28, 2024. Photo: Yin Yeping/GT

Kuno Gschwend, chief investment officer of the Embassy of Switzerland to China, gives a presentation at a subforum of the 14th China Overseas Investment Fair in Beijing on May 28, 2024. Photo: Yin Yeping/GT

Representatives and envoys from several foreign countries came together at a branch forum of the 14th China Overseas Investment Fair in Beijing on Tuesday, jointly sending welcoming messages for Chinese companies to come to their countries for investment and settlement.

Businesses in booming sectors such as the new-energy vehicle (NEV) industry and digital technology are particularly welcomed as these countries pursue high-quality development.

Despite the growing complexity of the world situation, with certain countries attempting “decoupling,” investment and business representatives from countries including Switzerland, Hungary and Solomon Islands expressed expectations for more companies from China to take part in their development.

Chinese companies are actively seeking new overseas markets. Kuno Gschwend, chief investment officer of the Embassy of Switzerland in China, told the Global Times that these companies are eyeing the Swiss market as a promising avenue for upgrading their technology and supply chains to expand globally.

Discussing the benefits of Chinese companies entering Switzerland, Gschwend highlighted how these businesses introduce healthy competition into the market, stimulate foreign direct investment, generate additional revenue streams and create jobs.

Gschwend emphasized Switzerland’s potential to serve as an attractive gateway for Chinese firms aiming to access the broader European market.

The representative also underscored the competitive edge that Chinese companies possess, particularly in burgeoning sectors like life sciences, automation and digital technology, where both Chinese and Swiss firms excel, fostering synergies potentially beneficial to both countries and their respective industries.

Gschwend singled out the potential for collaboration between Switzerland and China’s NEV sector, citing examples such as BYD working with local distributors in Switzerland, indicating a keen interest from Chinese companies to tap into the Swiss market.

Reflecting on Switzerland’s lack of a domestic automobile industry, he said “Unlike some other European countries, we don’t have our own Swiss car. So I think if the Chinese invest in Switzerland, it should be more welcomed than in other countries.”

Ambassador of Solomon Islands to China Barrett Salato told the Global Times at the forum that Chinese investors are very important for the high-quality and sustainable development of his country and “we need to expand that investment.”

“We want to diversify our commodities, not just focusing on forestry products but fisheries among others. Hopefully, Chinese investors can come and explore,” the ambassador said, noting that Solomon Islands is open to all investments from China.

Salato made particular note of the investment opportunities in green transformation, including building facilities for solar power and wind power.

Katalin Sógor, third secretary of the Economic, Trade, and Investment Promotion Section of Hungary, said that her country welcomes more investment from China.

Between 2014 and 2022, the stock of foreign direct investment from China to Hungary increased by 274 percent, according to Sógor.

Data released by the Ministry of Commerce on May 23 showed that in the first four months of this year, China’s non-financial direct investment abroad reached 343.47 billion yuan ($47.43 billion), an increase of 18.7 percent year-on-year.