(Yicai Global) Aug. 9 -- As the two of the world's major economies, as well as trade and investment powers, China and Germany should deal with global challenges together, safeguard the multilateral trade regime, support the opening of market and free trade, and respond positively against all forms of trade protectionism, China's Ambassador to Germany said at the China (Ningxia)-Germany industrial match-making meeting held in Berlin yesterday.
China has served as the Germany largest trade partner for two consecutive years. Bilateral trade with Germany amounted to EUR186.6 billion (USD216.5 million) last year, representing almost one-third of China's overall trade with the EU. Accumulated investment from German firms in China exceeds USD80 billion, official data shows. Chinese companies have accelerated investment in Germany in recent years, and bilateral investment cooperation is becoming more balanced and sustainable.
The global trade situation is changing at a fast rate. Trade protectionism, economic hegemony and unilateralism are heavily threatening the global free trade system, which has sparked worries and concerns of all sides, Shi added.
This year marks the 40th anniversary of China's reform and opening up. Since earlier this year, China has announced and gradually implemented a host of major opening-up measures, including making large tariff cuts on automotive imports, easing the limitations on foreign ownership in the automotive industry, relaxing restrictions on foreign investment in the financial sector, and hosting the China International Import Expo. Going forward, China will continue to deepen reform and expand opening-up coverage. These long-nurtured measures are being promoted to satisfy the needs of China's development initiative, said Shi.
China hopes that the German government can meet it halfway by adhering to the policy of market opening. Both sides enjoy unprecedented economic and trade ties with broad prospects lying ahead. There is still a great partnering potential for them in such traditional industries as automobile manufacturing, energy and chemicals. The emerging areas including artificial intelligence, digitalization, new energy vehicles and autonomous driving are gradually becoming the new drivers behind such closer ties. China's One Belt, One Road initiative also provides a pragmatic cooperation platform for companies from both countries, said Shi.
In the past two years, some German insiders have been quite doubtful and even fearful about China's investment, initiative and strategy. Yet, in fact, China's opening-up and development will bring golden opportunities for German enterprises, instead of posing threats, Shi said. German enterprises are witnesses, participants and beneficiaries to China's reform and opening up.
Shi hopes that German companies can grasp the opportunity to gain an in-depth understanding of China, follow the accurate market orientation and the trend of Sino-German cooperation, and embrace the opportunities brought about by the market opening and investment by China.
Editor: William Clegg