"As a member of our community, we always try the best to provide more support at such a special time." This is an official voice from Chevron China, which recently announced a donation of 2 million RMB to the China Women's Development Foundation to assist China in the fight against the epidemic.
From a foreign company to "a community member", in recent years, more and more foreign companies, like Chevron, choose to "settle" in Zhejiang, treating it as a "second home", looking for further corporate development.
Affected by the epidemic, this year the China's investment situation is tense. However, foreign investment in Zhejiang has an increase rather than decrease. From January to April 2020, the actual foreign investment in Zhejiang was $4.96 billion, which increased by 8.9% year on year, accounting for 12% of the national total.
The market will vote with its feet. This data reflects foreign capital's recognition of Zhejiang's advantages in business environment and industrial supporting facilities.
Business services make Zhejiang a "second home" for foreign companies
Seven years ago, chevron, a global industrial giant, commissioned McKinsey to identify sites in 86 Chinese cities for its lubricant additive production factory, considering the huge growth potential of the Chinese market. In April 2013, the project team visited Ningbo Economic and Technological Development Zone for the first time. After more than ten rounds of negotiation and investigation and countless offline communication, the development zone entered the candidate location list for the project. After two years and 16 rounds of negotiations, Chevron announced on March 3, 2015 that its first lubricating oil additive production base in China was located in Beilun District, Ningbo, and signed an investment agreement.
The President of Chevron Corporation said at the signing ceremony that, for Chevron, choosing Ningbo is not only because of its unique geographical condition, but also because of the professional quality and cooperative spirit demonstrated by the service team of Ningbo Development Zone during the site selection process.
After the project was clearly launched, Beilun District of Ningbo actively established a project coordination team. The government's investment promotion department formed the "four ones" working mode, which includes "one project, one team leader, one professional team and one project follow-through". It set up a central window to handle all the problems raised by enterprises and provided 7×24 hours of response and feedback. The government's examination and approval department also set up special groups, tables and specially-assigned persons to customize personalized plans and declare plans in advance for the corporate project, so as to promote the seamless cooperation among various relevant departments.
Zhejiang has great environment for business and family life. Its benign interaction with foreign capital has won the "heart" of more. Foreign companies are also growing with Zhejiang.
Royal Dutch Shell, the world's largest oil company, has experienced the systematic and professional investment services in Zhejiang. To locate Shell China's headquarter in Zhejiang, in the early stage of the project discussion, Hangzhou Xiacheng district actively collaborated with Hangzhou Business Committee, fully implement the city-district joint action. After understanding the Shell's location requirements and reasonable demands, Xiacheng district carried on the overall coordination. Its business bureau sent representatives to Beijing to help Shell go through the formalities for examination and approval of foreign investment projects. On December 14, 2015, Shell's headquarter was officially approved and settled in Xiacheng district, Hangzhou.
After the outbreak of COVID-19 this year, investment promotion services in Zhejiang have been rapidly adjusted. The special team mechanism for major foreign investment projects at provincial, municipal and county levels has been set up in various regions to strengthen services and constantly innovate investment promotion methods. Zhejiang promotes foreign investment projects' completion through "cloud signing" and other innovative forms, so as to overcome the impact of the epidemic and continuously release its attraction to foreign investment.
Supporting conditions: Zhejiang industry chain capacity valued by foreign capital
In addition to the continuous optimization of the business environment and steady release of foreign investment support policies, Zhejiang also has advantages in industrial support, market potential, and geographical location to attract, keep and benefit foreign companies. If the former ones are soft power, the latter ones are hard power.
In the early 21st century, in order to create a "new Panasonic" in China, Panasonic, the famous Japanese electronics manufacturer, vigorously promoted localization, intensification and coordination in China. In 2004, "Hangzhou Panasonic Industrial Park" was inaugurated and put into production.
Panasonic chose Hangzhou because it had to increase the local supply rate of raw materials and components to further reduce costs as competition intensified. When considering the establishment of large industrial parks in China, Panasonic focused on the following factors: the close connection between the upper and lower industrial chains, high quality of producers, good supporting conditions, sharing resources and large market. After investigation, Panasonic found that the Yangtze River Delta region is the most active market in China, and Zhejiang has the most developed production environment for home appliances and spare parts. Locating the base in Hangzhou can make the industrial supporting radius relatively concentrated. In addition, resources and talents are sufficient here. So, under the strong support of the local government, Panasonic decided to build an industrial park in Hangzhou.
French Saint-Gobain group is the also an industrial leader. In April 2019, The Saint-Gobain Gypsum Building Material Huzhou Changxing project was officially put into operation. In fact, as early as 10 years ago, the Saint-Gobain gypsum building materials project has started to plan the investment and expansion of production. Whether there is a power plant, mines and other basic supporting facilities, whether can provide an adequate supply of raw materials, are key factor for its consideration. The project party carried out long-term investigation in many sites throughout China. Saint-Gobain finally settled in Changxing after years of tracking and examining. The quality of Changxing's supporting environment and service philosophy is at the heart of Saint-Gobain's decision.
More cases have indicated that a large number of world's top 500 enterprises have set up factories and branches in Zhejiang province, and achieved a "win-win" situation.
ZJITS:a multidimensional high-quality platform for foreign investment to enter Zhejiang
One crucial reason that world top 500 companies continue to settle in Zhejiang is "ZJITS" platform.
Zhejiang Investment and Trade Symposium is an annual comprehensive foreign economic and trade communication activity sponsored by the People's government of Zhejiang Province. It has been successfully held for 21 consecutive years since 1999 and has become an important window for Zhejiang's high-level opening to the outside world.
2020 is a special year, Zhejiang Investment and Trade Symposium carry on with innovation form. From June 8th to 14th, the 22nd Zhejiang Investment and Trade Symposium will be held all over the province. It applies the form of online meeting for the first time.
The Zhejiang Investment and Trade Symposium will apply digital economy to find new breakthroughs in an open economy. Through the central acceptance window for international investment, Zhejiang enterprises can negotiate with foreign companies without leaving the country, while foreign investors can easily understand the Zhejiang investment environment, industrial development, policy support and enterprise services.
An entrepreneur said that the 22nd Zhejiang Investment and Trade Symposium is a great event for domestic and overseas enterprises to settle down, develop and establish a "second home" in Zhejiang. In the current global epidemic and economic situation, such a conference to promote exchanges and cooperation among global enterprises is of great importance.
Writers | "Zheshang magazine" journalists Xia Sainan & Ni min
Translator | "Zheshang magazine" journalist Xia Sainan
Company Name: Zheshang magazine
Contact Person: Xia Sainan
SOURCE: Zheshang magazine
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