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China, an enticing destination for FDI in new quality productive forces

By Kulsum Begum

China’s “new quality productive forces” concept has gained global attention due to recently held crucial business events like the China Development Forum 2024, the Invest in China Summit, and the annual conference of the Boao Forum for Asia 2024. CEOs of several world-famous multinational corporations are keen to invest in China’s potential emerging sectors as its industry has created business opportunities not only for China’s local businesses but also for foreign companies operating in the country.

For instance, Siemens, the German company, and Danfoss, a Danish technology and engineering conglomerate, are investing in China’s green transition, particularly in smart manufacturing and innovation. Siemens plans to expand its digital factory in Chengdu, the capital city of southwest China’s Sichuan Province, by the end of the year, while Danfoss plans to build its largest manufacturing base in Haiyan County, east China’s Zhejiang Province.

Innovation and sustainability as the driving forces behind new quality productive forces emulate advanced productivity with high-tech, high-efficiency, high-quality characteristics that align with the new development philosophy. China’s policy support, openness, reformation, and green transition have added an extra dimension to it.

China’s digital revolution is fueled by emerging industries like AI, high-tech manufacturing, quantum computing, new energy and materials, biotech, e-commerce, electric vehicles, brain-computer interfaces, big data, cloud services, blockchain, and on-demand computing power, all within a rapidly changing global economy.

Digital payment systems, e-governance, e-commerce, digital transactions, digital consumption, and online communities have all grown significantly in China, demonstrating the country’s quick shift from a traditional to a digital economy. As of March 2023, the National Government Service Platform has one billion registered users and has been accessed 86 billion times. These developments not only ensure China’s sustainable economic development and modernization but also offer international best practices.

Just take China’s promising AI and high-tech manufacturing sector as an example. China’s AI sector has been growing quickly. The sector is predicted to grow to a size of more than 1.7 trillion yuan ($235 billion) by 2035, accounting for 30.6 percent of the world’s total. In the first two months of 2024, foreign direct investment (FDI) in China’s high-tech manufacturing sector increased by 10.1 percent year-on-year to $3.92 billion, underscoring the country’s potential prospects for international investors.

China has emerged as the global leader in green development and technology, with its new-energy cars, solar batteries, and lithium-ion batteries setting the standard. In terms of exports, automated data processing equipment, integrated circuits, and vehicles made up approximately 60 percent of all exports in the first two months of this year. The global economy is benefiting from China’s investments in information and technology.

Several strong reasons have made China an attractive destination for future industry-based FDI. China is positioned strategically as a technology powerhouse, and its well-timed embrace of the notion of “new quality productive forces” and geographic location allows for smooth regional and global data and high-tech communication, making it a potential global hub of emerging industries.

China guarantees a green and eco-friendly infrastructure and global supply chain, matching with global sustainability objectives and making it an appealing option for FDI in high-tech industries. It also boasts an abundance of renewable energy and sustainable high-tech development. Consequently, investing in China entails making use of the global market’s potential and contributing to sustainable global growth.

A robust market for emerging businesses is created by China’s flourishing digital environment, offering a wealth of investment prospects. Encouraging and protecting foreign investments in future-industry-based businesses are proactive government initiatives that cultivate an investment-friendly atmosphere. China’s young and tech-savvy populace, along with robust intellectual property rights and initiatives focused on cultivating digital skills, create a skilled workforce ready to drive growth in emerging industry sectors. These factors make the country increasingly appealing to foreign investors.

Beyond its technical strength, China’s breathtaking landscapes and vibrant cultural heritage draw expatriates and foreign experts, further enriching the country’s pool of talent.

As the world witnesses China’s rise as a global powerhouse in new quality productive forces, the possibilities for collaboration, growth, and shared prosperity are boundless. In this age of opportunity, China stands ready to embrace the future, and those who join this journey will be part of a remarkable story of innovation, sustainability, and lasting impact.

* Kulsum Begum is a special commentator on current affairs for CGTN.

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