Belt and Road Ini­tia­tive con­nects Chi­nese ca­pa­bil­i­ties with­UK­ex­per­tise

China Daily (Canada) - - BUSINESS - By XIN­HUA

Chi­nese and Bri­tish com­pa­nies are closely and suc­cess­fully en­gag­ing in projects linked to the Belt and Road Ini­tia­tive, demon­strat­ing the com­ple­men­tar­ity of Chi­nese and UK ex­per­tise across the globe, a re­port showed.

A to­tal of 21 ex­am­ples of UK-China co­op­er­a­tion, in 10 coun­tries with projects worth more than $27 bil­lion, fea­ture in a re­port jointly re­leased in Bei­jing by the Chi­naBri­tain Busi­ness Coun­cil and Ts­inghua Univer­sity onWed­nes­day.

The re­port in­cludes case stud­ies from some of the UK’s most renowned com­pa­nies such as HSBC Hold­ings Ltd, BP Plc, LME Ltd, Lin­klaters and KPMG, with the aim to en­cour­age more Bri­tish-Chi­nese part­ner­ships on the enor­mous China-pro­posed BeltandRoad­Ini­tia­tive.

Around two-thirds of the world’s pop­u­la­tion live in the coun­tries that are linked by the Belt and Road Ini­tia­tive. How­ever, these same coun­tries only ac­count for one-third of the world’s GDP. In­fra­struc­ture is key to the eco­nomic devel­op­ment along these routes and many op­por­tu­ni­ties ex­ist for UK com­pa­nies.

Lord Sas­soon, chair­man of the CBBC, said that Sino-UK com­pa­nies’ part­ner­ships fall into three ma­jor cat­e­gories — UK and Chi­nese firms jointly work­ing on projects in third-coun­try mar­kets, Chi­nese firms us­ing the UK as a plat­form for ser­vic­ing projects in third-coun­try mar­kets, and UK firms pro­vid­ing pro­fes­sional ad­vice or ser­vices to Chi­nese firms op­er­at­ing in un­fa­mil­iar, of­ten risky, busi­ness en­vi­ron­ments.

“As this re­port shows, ex­ist­ing projects along the Belt and Road Ini­tia­tive demon­strate syn­ergy be­tween Chi­nese and Bri­tish firms,” Sas­soon said.

Chi­nese en­ter­prises are ex­pe­ri­enced in build­ing in­fra­struc­ture, while en­ter­ing un­fa­mil­iar, chal­leng­ing and of­ten risky busi­ness and ge­o­graph­i­cal en­vi­ron­ments plays well to the ex­per­tise of UK firms, ac­cord­ing to Giles Black­burne, ed­i­tor of the re­port and CBBC ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor.

The case study re­port demon­strates pow­er­ful part­ner­ships be­tween Bri­tish and Chi­nese com­pa­nies that play to their unique strengths. HSBC, along with twoChi­nese banks, has pro­vided debt fa­cil­i­ties for a power plant in Bangladesh with the de­sign, con­sul­tancy, en­gi­neer­ing and con­struc­tion ex­per­tise sup­plied by ma­jorChi­nese en­ter­prises. UK law firm Lin­klaters has pro­vided le­gal ser­vices to Chi­nese banks in­volved in fi­nancin­ga­coalmine­and as­so­ci­ated power sta­tion in Pak­istan.

“We have wit­nessed the abun­dant busi­ness op­por­tu­ni­ties brought by the ini­tia­tive, which in­creased in­vest­ment, job cre­ation and im­proved in­fra­struc­ture con­di­tions in the tar­get re­gions,” said Fang Jian, Lin­klaters’ na­tional man­ag­ing part­ner for China.

It is vi­tal that lessons are learned about reg­u­la­tory, com­mer­cial and cul­tural dif­fer­ences while de­vel­op­ing projects along the Belt and Road Ini­tia­tive to make sure the de­mands of both par­ties are co­or­di­nated, Fang added.

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