Foreigners see big opportunities in landlocked Chinese province

0 Comment(s)Print E-mail Xinhua, 01 25, 2018
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WUHAN, Jan. 24 (Xinhua) -- Central China's Hubei Province invited 27 foreigners to the opening of the provincial people's congress annual session on Wednesday to help them better understand Hubei's latest achievements and future plans.

The foreigners, mainly consular officials, senior executives, business representatives and experts, view this landlocked Chinese province as offering big opportunities in the economy and culture.

"I was impressed by the provincial government's emphasis on economic quality rather than speed," said Toshiyuki Koya, a Wuhan-based representative of the Japan External Trade Organization.

Hubei reported GDP growth of 7.8 percent last year, with greater contributions coming from the service sector.

"The vitality of emerging industries delights all of us," said Toshiyuki Koya.

He said that around 200 Japanese firms have invested in Hubei, with 80 percent of the businesses in the auto industry. In the next three years, another 50-plus Japanese firms are expected to take root in Hubei, targeting emerging sectors such as the Internet and culture.

The market environment has been getting better and better in recent years, said Steven Carpenter, president of AmCham China's Central China Chapter. He said foreigners are confident in investing in Hubei in the long run.

Chung Jae-Nam, Consul General of the Republic of Korea in Wuhan, said that Hubei's economy shows great vitality. The approval of a free trade zone in the province will help Hubei open up its economy.

"We will cooperate with our Chinese counterparts in sectors including environmental protection, youth exchanges, culture and art in the future," he said.

As a landlocked province, Hubei has made efforts to attract foreign investors by carrying out favorable policies, hosting international meetings and launching more cargo trains and flights.

As of 2017, more than 260 Global 500 companies had invested in Hubei, making it the top destination for Global 500 companies in central China.

Hubei started inviting foreign representatives to attend the opening ceremony of its provincial people's congress in 2012.

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