China, ASEAN seek to expand industrial capacity cooperation

Source:Xinhua Published: 2016/9/13 8:36:08

Jin Ningyun, chairman of Guangxi Construction Engineering Group, hopes to, literally, achieve sweet results at the ongoing China-ASEAN Expo: deals to build three sugar refineries in Thailand.

The agreements will be signed after a previous sugar factory funded by his company proved a success in Uthai Thani, Thailand.

"The factory now produces about 12,000 tonnes of sugar every day. We provide all the technology and Thailand provides sugarcanes," said Jin.

Its products not only target Thai consumers but also hit the market for the whole of ASEAN, said Qin Yang, an expert with the China Council for the Promotion of International Trade.

In addition to Thailand, Guangxi Construction Engineering Group is considering investment in Indonesia, Laos and Cambodia, said Jin.

Industrial capacity cooperation is one of the most discussed issues at the 13th China-ASEAN Expo, which has attracted more than 2,500 companies from 29 countries to the border region of Guangxi.

"China is ready to actively push industrial capacity cooperation with ASEAN on a voluntary, equal and mutually beneficial basis," said Vice Premier Zhang Gaoli at the event running from Sunday to Wednesday.

The cooperation can be carried out by means of direct investment, project outsourcing, technological cooperation and trade of equipment,Zhang said.

China encourages the export of advanced, affordable and eco-friendly industrial capacities to countries that need them, said Ning Jizhe, vice director of the National Development and Reform Commission.

"China prioritizes ASEAN in industrial capacity cooperation," said Ning.

China is ASEAN's largest trading partner and the bloc is China's third largest trading partner.

So far, more than 300 China-funded enterprises have been set up in 26 economic cooperation zones in eight ASEAN countries, investing a total of 1.77 billion US dollars.

Last week, China and ASEAN issued a joint declaration in Vientiane, Laos, agreeing to support industrial capacity cooperation to boost economic ties and create a positive environment for foreign investors.

Such cooperation can help match supply and demand for countries at different development stages and with different advantages, said Gao Yan, Vice Minister of Commerce, at the expo.

Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen believes there is much potential for China-ASEAN cooperation and has encouraged Chinese investment in ASEAN countries.

Malaysia is willing to conduct research and development with China and share their results and experiences of "Made in China 2025," a drive to upgrade manufacturing, said Malaysian Second Minister of International Trade and Industry, Ong Ka Chuan.

Despite bright prospects, there remain many challenges, said Yang Xiuping, secretary-general of the ASEAN-China Center, an intergovernmental organization.P

"Chinese enterprises need to adapt themselves to overseas markets and some ASEAN countries need to adjust their laws and regulations," said Yang.

ASEAN and China should do more things concretely not just conceptually, said Datuk Supperamaniam, former Ambassador of Malaysia to the World Trade Organization.

In his view, a sailing ship must have a destination, and now that destination is industrial capacity cooperation.

Posted in: Diplomacy

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