Chinese firms grow more resilient under US crackdown: experts at Wenzhou Entrepreneurs Forum
Published: Apr 03, 2023 09:12 PM
Wenzhou Entrepreneurs Forum Photo: Courtesy of the forum

Wenzhou Entrepreneurs Forum Photo: Courtesy of the forum

Not one good Chinese company under US sanctions has "died;" on the contrary, they have been forced to learn from their "US teachers" to enhance their core competitiveness and shore up their anti-pressure abilities, Chinese experts said at a forum on Monday.

"From the 'trade war' to the 'tech war' that the US initiated toward China, I have not seen one good private company that collapsed under the crackdown," Wang Wen, the executive dean of the Chongyang Institute for Financial Studies, Renmin University, told the Global Times on the sidelines of the Wenzhou Entrepreneurs Forum held in Wenzhou, East China's Zhejiang Province, an entrepreneurial hub in the country.

As the best example, the US launched an all-out effort to crush Chinese 5G frontrunner Huawei, but the Chinese private company has survived the years of bullying and emerged more resilient and stronger, Wang said.

From Huawei to telecommunications giant ZTE and video surveillance company Hikvision, all these Chinese firms have developed well in spite of the curbs by the US government, he said, noting that Huawei's experience has actually encouraged China's private companies to bravely move forward.

Though the sanctions are troublesome for these companies, it "taught" them to be better aware of the extremely tough and risky global environment, and forced them to strengthen their abilities, cultivate their bottom-line thinking and risk awareness, and enhanced their capability to resist crackdowns, he added.

Chinese companies, especially the high-tech developers, have grown rapidly and gained more market share across the world. While they have become strong competitors on the global stage, they have also stirred up fears in Washington, which tries to retain its hegemony.

"I think [the US crackdown on China] is a very unfortunate development," Martin Jacques, a senior fellow at the Department of Politics and International Studies, Cambridge University, told the Global Times on the sidelines of the forum.

The US unfortunately decided that China is a threat to its global position, therefore, it wants to limit China's economic rise, he said, noting that the deterioration of the relationship between the world's two largest economies is bad for the US, for China, and the world.

The global economy has not been in great shape because of the pandemic followed by inflation and other factors, he said, pointing out that"China is going to be the main engine of growth, together probably with India."

As the biggest trading country, China has more trading partners in the world, far more than the US. With its Belt and Road Initiative and the pursuit of win-win with developing countries, "China has still got very strong relationships with many countries, which have the majority of the world's population," he added.

As an entrepreneurial hub in China, Wenzhou has been one of the pioneers exploring the global market. 

In 2022, the city's foreign trade totaled 295 billion yuan ($42.8 billion), surging 22.4 percent year-on-year in spite of the COVID-19 pandemic. Its GDP also hit a new high last year, exceeding 800 billion yuan for the first time.

The rapid growth of foreign trade was in line with Wenzhou's well-known entrepreneurial spirit. "There are 700,000 Wenzhou people all over the world, and 1.75 million Wenzhou people who are starting businesses all over China, and the city has established economic and trade ties with over 130 countries and regions," Chen Yingxu, vice mayor of the city, said at the forum.