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Deloitte invests heavily in China
( 2003-11-21 09:01) (China Daily)

The world's leading service company, Deloitte, is planning to invest US$150-200 million over the next five years to expand its business in China, given the nation's strong marketing potential.

William G. Parrett, Deloitte's global Chief Executive Officer, said this was a very big investment for a service company, which does not make industrial investments.

The money will be spent on "people and the training of people," Parrett said in an interview on Wednesday in Beijing.

Deloitte would put more attention on the Chinese market and transfer more advanced expertise from other parts of the world to China to help with its reform of the State-owned enterprises (SOEs), he said, adding that he himself would spend quite an amount of time in China each year as a sort of personal commitment.

It was Parrett's first visit to China after being appointed as Deloitte's global CEO in June.

Human resources is a crucial part of the infrastructure construction of the company, which is providing audit, tax and consulting services in China through 2,500 people in nine major Chinese cities.

In the next few years, it will recruit more local people, especially college graduates. Meanwhile, it will bring more foreign experts to China and build relationships with other accounting and consulting firms in the country, said Peter Bowie, Deloitte's CEO for China.

Bowie said apart from the planned US$150-200 million, the company might make more investments in the near future, or might add more investments in the next five years, though that would depend on the market opportunities.

He also said Deloitte plans to open more offices in China.

As it is already well represented in coastal areas, it will now look to central and western China, and it is currently in discussion with a number of areas.

Deloitte's development in China is also a response to the market.

"We understand how important China is to the world economy," said Parrett. "Our clients from all around the world are doing business in China."

"They want us to help them build business and need services," he added.

Moreover, the Chinese authorities have sent positive signals to foreign investors to encourage their participation in the restructuring of the SOEs.

Mergers and acquisitions, also a sector that Deloitte has been specialized in, are gathering pace in China with the SOE reform.

Deloitte can provide such services to introduce this expertise, he said.

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