Beijing (English) - - INFO -

The Sino-swiss Eco­nomic Fo­rum (SSEF) 2018 was held at the Penin­sula Bei­jing ho­tel on Septem­ber 6, 2018. It was at­tended by Fed­eral Coun­cil­lor Jo­hann N. Sch­nei­der-am­mann, head of the Fed­eral Depart­ment of Eco­nomic Af­fairs, Ed­u­ca­tion and Re­search of Switzer­land; and Zhai Qian, di­rec­tor-gen­eral of the Depart­ment of Eu­ro­pean Af­fairs of the Min­istry of Com­merce of the Peo­ple’s Repub­lic of China. The SSEF at­tracted the par­tic­i­pa­tion of more than 50 rep­re­sen­ta­tives from the eco­nomic and sci­en­tific sec­tors.

Fed­eral Coun­cil­lor Jo­hann N. Sch­nei­der-am­mann de­liv­ered a speech at the fo­rum, stat­ing that China is one of the most im­por­tant des­ti­na­tions for Switzer­land’s out­bound di­rect in­vest­ment in Asia, so it is very im­por­tant for Swiss com­pa­nies. He also stressed that bi­lat­eral trade be­tween China and Switzer­land re­flects China’s im­por­tant re­la­tion­ship with Switzer­land. There has been a re­mark­able in­crease in trade be­tween the two coun­tries af­ter the im­ple­men­ta­tion of the Si­noSwiss Free Trade Agree­ment. China is Switzer­land’s third largest trade part­ner af­ter the United States and the Eu­ro­pean Union. Sch­nei­derAm­mann praised the ro­bust bi­lat­eral ties and trade be­tween China and Switzer­land and reaf­firmed the in­ter­est of Swiss com­pa­nies in the Chi­nese mar­ket.

Since China and Switzer­land en­tered into the free trade agree­ment four years ago, more com­pa­nies have en­gaged in bi­lat­eral trade and ex­pect a promis­ing fu­ture in this kind of trade. Chi­nese Pres­i­dent Xi Jin­ping paid a state visit to Switzer­land in Jan­uary 2017 and con­sol­i­dated eco­nomic ties be­tween the coun­tries. Rep­re­sen­ta­tives from the two coun­tries pledged to con­tinue pro­mot­ing bi­lat­eral free trade at the SSEF 2018.

The SSEF takes place in Bei­jing bi­en­ni­ally. This year’s SSEF was jointly hosted by the Em­bassy of Switzer­land in China and the Swiss Chi­nese Cham­ber of Com­merce in Bei­jing and was spon­sored by swiss­nex China. The fo­rum fea­tured free trade as its theme. Par­tic­i­pat­ing ex­perts and en­trepreneurs dis­cussed the fu­ture of re­tail­ing in the con­text of tech­no­log­i­cal in­no­va­tion. They also ex­plored the liv­ing, work­ing and busi­ness mod­els of sus­tain­able cities in China and Switzer­land. Over 350 par­tic­i­pants and guests were present at the fo­rum, in­clud­ing busi­ness lead­ers and govern­ment of­fi­cials from China and Switzer­land.

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