China Update

1. China has assisted in infrastructure development throughout Africa, through the Forum on China Africa Development, as part of China’s “Belt and Road” Policy – building railways, roads and industrial parks.

2. Over the next 15 years, China is set to import $30 trillion (26.5 trillion Euros; £23.5 trillion) worth of goods and 10 trillion dollars in services.

3. The EU SME Centre leads new paths for helping European Small and Medium sized Enterprises with their China business, in conjunction with the China-Britain Business Council, providing advice in business development, law, standards and conformity, and human resources:

“When doing business in China SMEs need to learn to have patience, prepare well for the market, protect intellectual property rights, and take time to invest in relationships.”

4. Liu Thai Ker, Singapore’s “father of city planning", had a hand in shaping the urban landscape in China. It started in 1978 when Deng Xiaoping visited Singapore.  Liu took care of him as Liu could speak Mandarin well.  Liu was Chief Planner in Singapore from 1989–1992.  Liu’s first commission from Deng was to plan the city of Fuzhou, the capital of the Fujian Province, and created a quality master plan.  He was pressed by Xi Jinping to build Fuzhou Changle International Airport.  To develop Xiamen Island in Fujian, he successfully opposed the destruction of historic buildings, a goldmine for tourists.  He devised a master plan for Ningbo, Zhejiang Province.  Similarly, he has developed Xi’an’s master plan for a CBD for the district and an integral railway line linking the CBD to a site dating back to the Northern Zhou Dynasty (557–581) with a walkway of contemporary buildings in architectural styles progressing from that Dynasty to the Qing Dynasty (1644–1911).

Liu has planned close to 50 cities in China over almost 35 years.  Many are in the pipeline (Qingdao, Yantai and Jinan, all in the Shandong Province).

Protection of ecological areas has been emphasised.

Three things are required to design a good “meal” city, Liu says:

  • Good “ingredients” or materials
  • Good “recipe” or urban plan
  • Strict enforcement of the “recipe” plan!

5. China’s first full fledged overseas car plant will begin operations this year in Western Russia’s Tula region, a $500 million factory for Great Wall Motor Company, China’s largest SUV and pick-up manufacturer, to increase its global annual capacity – 150,000 units – for Russian and European markets.

6. Self-owned intellectual property rights are being stepped up in Chinese tech enterprises, from cashless transactions to the world’s fastest big data computing, the world’s largest electric vehicle market, the world’s most advanced high-speed rail network, the world’s biggest producer of AI, to the world’s leading photovoltaic industries (solar cells converting sunlight into electricity).


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