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Companies adjust their international development strategy


04-18-2017 13:55 BJT

Full coverage: Belt and Road Forum for Int'l Cooperation

(Source: CGTN)

The Belt and Road Initiative is an international strategy, aiming to link more than just trade routes across multiple continents. While it is supported by China's public sector and state-owned companies, the country’s private firms are responding to this government strategy by fine tuning their international development game plans.

Quanzhou city in Fujian, one of the starting points of the ancient maritime silk road, was home to China’s earliest international merchants.

How today’s companies in Fujian do business along the 21st century silk road is very different from the old times. But internationalization is still in their genes.

Sportswear maker Peak owes 23 percent of its sales to international markets. It sponsors world sporting events from tennis, basketball to the Olympics. The company’s founder says China’s belt and road initiatives will help the growth of new markets.

“In the age of industrialization, coastal countries have become wealthy since they have better ports. Now with the belt and road initiatives, it’s about time that land-locked economies along the silk road get a chance for better development,” said Xu Jingnan, chairman, Peak Sport Products.

Peak wants to reach ten billion yuan worth of annual sales across 100 countries in the future. The company is recalibrating its expansion focus since the belt and road initiatives were announced.

“We have good recognition among belt and road markets, especially in places like Southeast Asia, Russia, Serbia and Pakistan. With the support of this national strategy, our focus of expansion in the future will be on these belt and road countries,” Xu said.

Similar stories can be told for companies along China’s outward-oriented coastal provinces. Home appliances maker Midea Group in Fuoshan city in Guangdong attributes over half of its annual sales to overseas markets.

“Along the silk road we have increased investments in the countries such as Azerbaijan, Belarus, Germany. Along the maritime silk road we have invested in markets like Malaysia, Vietnam and Indonesia. Through building industrial zones, we will achieve better localization in these markets,” said Paul Fang, Chairman & CEO, Midea Group.

Midea Group now has 29 production bases around the world and 12 of them are in belt and road countries. The national strategy represents a promise for new growth points, and companies are responding quickly.

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