Investors worldwide taking note of Foshan's progress

Updated: 2014-03-06 11:28

(China Daily)

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Though global businesses remain cautious about investment as regional competition for scarce capital is intensifying nationwide, Foshan city recorded sustained growth in foreign investment in 2013.

This is not just coincidence. Foshan's economic climate is booming and foreign investors are taking note, local officials said.

The city's competitiveness ranks among the eight best of China, according to the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences.

In addition, Foshan has been featured in the Economist and Foreign Policy magazine as the city that "best represents China's emerging economic frontier".

Zhou Zhitong, director-general of the Bureau of Foreign Trade and Economic Cooperation of Foshan, said the city's pursuit of investments in the light of the strategy for industrial chain development bore new fruit in 2013.

The city has secured high quality investment projects that helped its transformation and the upgrade of local industrial structure.

The official cited many examples of the new high-end manufacturing and modern service projects.

They include the R&D project of Japan-based Howa Textile Industry, the data back-office support project of KPMG, the ceramic chip capacitor plant invested by Japan-based Murata, the Asia-Pacific headquarters of Osram, the ceramic machinery production center funded by Italy-based B&T, and the automobile manufacturing facilities of FAW-Volkswagen and Beiqi-Foton.

The city began to implement its three-year investment-seeking strategy in 2012, which attaches maximal importance to potential investments that help to build, supplement and fortify the city's industrial chains.

"The new projects on one hand are expected to make the city's traditional and advantageous businesses more technology-intensive and on the other to cluster up its strategic growth industries and advanced manufacturing sectors," Zhou said.

The city government has made it a priority on its agenda of this year to increase innovation and promote the growth of the service industry. Technological and financial expertise, as well as human resources, is anticipated to help local industries have a new lease on life, he said.

Also, the government focuses on optimizing industrial structure. It continues to put an emphasis on attracting advanced manufacturing projects and strategic emerging industries in 2014, enabling local industries to move up the value chain.

The move is expected to help increase the city's core competitiveness and transform it from a production hub to a creation center.

Moreover, the government will advance foreign trade and e-commerce this year, through building a comprehensive service platform for international transactions and aiding small businesses to go global more conveniently, said the official.

Foshan will continue to expand its global network for investment promotion and foreign trade to build a world-class business environment based on the rule of law, he said.

It will accelerate its pace to improve administrative and financial services for enterprises and elaborate innovative preferential policies, according to the city government

Drawing more professionals and experts will also help strengthen the information collection network and communication mechanism, Zhou added.

Local officials are striving to improve efficiency within the municipal government to make Foshan an ideal destination for investment and business, he said.

Investors worldwide taking note of Foshan's progress