Opinion\Op-Ed Contributors

Stability has stimulated trade

China Daily | Updated: 2017-10-24 08:28

Stability has stimulated trade


Stability has stimulated trade

Klaus Fischer, chairman of Fischer Group, one of the world's leading suppliers of stainless steel tubes, based in Germany

Editor's Note: The Communist Party of China is holding its 19th National Congress in Beijing. China Daily asked three business leaders for their views on developments in China and the country's global leadership.

What has been China's biggest achievement during the past five years and its most notable change?

The country is playing an increasingly influential role in the world economy because of its rapid development. Simultaneously, it is stimulating and encouraging global trade growth. China has opened up to the outside world. In terms of education and training in kindergartens, schools, universities and colleges, the country has developed at an incredible pace.

Of course, it is concerned about its future-far more than many other countries. For the Fischer Group, China has become one of the most important markets in the world. About 37 percent of global construction volume is now taking place in the world's second-biggest economy. Our significant progress in the automotive industry, as well as in the construction sector, reflects China's development.

Which three words would you use to describe China today?

Stability. Development. Integration. China's political continuity has helped stimulate the global economy. When it comes to development, the country continues to stand for reforms and an open-door policy. The Belt and Road Initiative adds to this policy and is an important part of China's globalization strategy. Finally, integration has proved vital. Through its open-door policy, China has created a multinational culture.

What is the biggest challenge China faces, and how can the country overcome it?

The most important thing is training and further education. People must be prepared for the future. Only countries that invest in their citizens are going to be successful. China has seen a long process of persistent and rapid economic development. The challenges now are to adjust the industrial structure, as well as highlighting environmental issues. I am convinced, however, that the Chinese government will ring in a new era with the "green economy".

Could China's experiences be used to solve global problems?

In the past few years, China's economy has grown quickly and has achieved good results, even during the global economic crisis. We can benefit from the country's experiences and procedures in economic issues. Obviously, there are examples out there, such as the founding of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank and the Belt and Road Initiative, as well as the economic and technical support for developing countries. Infrastructure has also played an important role.

What are the most unforgettable experiences you have had in China?

I have seen how quickly Chinese universities have developed and become internationally oriented. As honorary professor of Tongji University, I have closely accompanied China's development in the past 20 years. When I talk to students at the university, what deeply impresses me is their intelligence, ability to learn and diligence. That is why the best students and lecturers of the year also receive the Klaus Fischer scholarship. In addition, we are building a new laboratory at Tongji University.

What factors will boost growth this year and in 2018, and what are the challenges facing China's economy?

One of the greatest challenges is maintaining growth and high employment. Catching up in sectors, where China is not yet strong, is another priority. From my perspective, the introduction of the Belt and Road Initiative was extremely important for development and China's influence in the world. But it also entails the burden of responsibility. China's greatest challenges lie in getting on top of industrial and technological structures. Just as challenging, as in other countries, will be issues such as Industry 4.0(or advanced manufacturing) and digitalization.

Which sectors do you think offer the most opportunities for development?

The development potential of the economy should not be related to industries. With our five divisions-Fischer Fixing Systems, Fischer Automotive Systems, Fischer Technik, Fischer Consulting and LNT automation-we successfully combine different sectors. Our mission statement is the key to success. It defines the corporate target and the central values of all members of staff.

What are the most innovative trends and products in China?

One trend has been China's awareness of intellectual property rights. Protecting innovation has increased in the past few years. I expect new developments in electric vehicles, internet technologies and the aviation industry. With the launch of the extraordinary C919,(the first homegrown large passenger aircraft), China has reached a milestone. We can expect further positive development from the country in the foreseeable future.

China is known as a manufacturing giant, but what will the country's "calling card" be in the future?

The production industry has developed rapidly in the past few years. I expect similar progress in the high-tech sector, especially in the fields of electronics, mobility and aviation. China will have a great impact on the digital world.

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