China hones global competence via industrial prowess

Updated: 2015-05-07 15:44


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BEIJING - Facing an economic slowdown, China is eyeing the global market in an ambitious drive to fast-track industrial cooperation, which it says will benefit both the country and the world economy.

The Chinese government sees industrial cooperation with other countries as one of the nation's most important agendas, with the cabinet issuing a policy guideline on Wednesday to encourage competent domestic sectors, including railways, electric power, telecommunications, construction and machinery to expand overseas.

The cabinet said domestic companies may seek chances for industrial and equipment manufacturing cooperation through a range of measures, including investment, projects contracting, and technological cooperation.

Benefits are more than mutual, as it gives China the chance to better its industrial prowess through upgrades and improve its international competence. Such cooperative projects also boost employment and economic vitality in other countries.

The world economy as a whole will also benefit from industrial and equipment manufacturing cooperation among nations, the Chinese cabinet said.

Diao Chunhe, chairman of the China International Contractors Association, said project contractors are embracing huge business opportunities in infrastructure cooperation, particularly in countries along the Belt and Road, China's initiative to enhance international connections through building regional transport networks.

Over the years, China has relied on project contracting to boost exports of raw materials and equipment and nurture its domestic industries such as transport, telecommunications and finance.

"In the past, China's overseas infrastructure projects have focused on the property market, but at present, sea ports, airports, expressways and railways are dominant," Diao said.

On Wednesday, Brunei and China agreed on the Pulau Muara Besar Bridge project worth $204 million. Boston in the US signed a contract with China's bullet train maker CNR to purchase 284 subway trains worth almost $7 million in January.

In November, the country also signed a $12 billion agreement to build a railway along Nigeria's coast.

The Chinese cabinet said industrial cooperation should fully take into account other countries actual needs and concerns.

To facilitate economic and trade cooperation, the cabinet said efforts will be made to improve a cross-border yuan payment system and simplify administrative procedures for companies' overseas investment.

China in recent years has also called for foreign input in new institutions such as the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank and BRICS development bank to finance infrastructure projects. It also set up a $40-billion Silk Road Fund to provide financial service for connection projects.