China and Germany

China in record direct investment in Germany


  • State-owned Chinese investor Beijing Enterprises on Thursday agreed to pay 1.43 billion euros ($1.60 billion) for Germany’s EEW Energy from Waste, based in the western German town of Helmstedt and employing 1,050 workers. The Chinese added they were willing to acquire the German waste-to-energy market leader from Swedish private equity group EQT in what was billed as the largest direct investment in Germany by a Chinese firm to date.

Chinese billions for German businesses


  • In Germany, Chinese investors enjoy a good reputation. Huotari is a co-author of a study for the Mercator Institute that looks at the dimension of China’s corporate engagement in Europe. According to Huotari’s research, Chinese investments in Europe in 2014 were at 18 billion euros ($19.5 billion). That’s significant because roughly a decade ago, hardly any Chinese were investing in Europe at all. Between 2000 and 2014, more than 1,000 startups, mergers and acquisitions worth some 46 billion euros took place.

China mourns West German Chancellor Schmidt


  • China is mourning the death of former West German Chancellor Helmut Schmidt, a “pioneer of China-Germany relations,” said a spokesperson for the Chinese Foreign Ministry on Wednesday. Schmidt, who served as Chancellor of West Germany from 1974 to 1982, died aged 96 at his home in Hamburg on Tuesday afternoon.

Merkel wraps up China visit with closer economic ties

Published on Oct 30, 2015

China buys Airbus jets worth $17B, agrees to foreign exchange venture

By Joe McDonald The Associated Press October 29, 2015

  • BEIJING – China has committed to buying 130 Airbus jets worth $17 billion during a visit by German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

China Working to Halt Commercial Cyberwar in Deal With Germany

October 29, 2015 — 8:31 AM EDT

  • China and Germany agreed to work on stopping economic cyber spying between the two nations amid mounting concern that the thousands of small- and medium-sized companies that form the backbone of German industry are ill-equipped to repel hacking attacks. Similar no-spy agreements exist between China and the U.S. as well as the U.K., Merkel said Thursday in Beijing. Germany, the Asian nation’s biggest European trade partner, seeks such a deal “very quickly,” and China agreed, she told reporters after talks with Chinese Premier Li Keqiang.

China’s central partners in Europe

Updated: 2015-10-26 07:57

By Michael Clauss and Maurice Gourdault-Montagne(China Daily USA)

  • In a short while, the leaders of our two countries will visit China within days of each other. This occurrence could not have come at a better time. Germany and France have both been China’s comprehensive strategic partners for many years. However, never before have our respective partnerships with China been more relevant to addressing global pressing issues. No other two countries coordinate their policies more closely than France and Germany in particular within the European Union. France and Germany are convinced that the world has to gradually engage on the path of deep decarbonization.
  • China supports a strong and prosperous European Union, its first trading partner in the world. France and Germany acted in close coordination to find an acceptable outcome to the Greek crisis and to restore confidence in the Euro. For both our countries, the European unification process and the Euro are non-reversible. Looking at the Chinese economy, we are confident that China continues to have enormous potential for growth, which will be unlocked in the coming years if China commits itself vigorously to further opening up and market-oriented reforms, including in the State sector. In this perspective, France and Germany fully support the negotiations towards an ambitious and truly comprehensive Sino-European bilateral agreement on investment.
  • China’s success will depend crucially on technological upgrading. Germany and France combined probably are China’s most important international partners in its modernization drive. Roughly 200 billion euros ($220 billion) in trade with China in 2014 marked a new record, almost four times as much as China’s trade with any other EU country. We are leaders in sectors which are crucial to China’s “Made in China 2025”. Germany has its “industry 4.0.” and France its “industry of the future”, covering a wide range of key areas from next generation of transportation to the internet of things. And we do not only trade but build up manufacturing, research and development within China. Airbus for example has moved faster than any competitor to move manufacturing and development to China. A growing number of Chinese are studying French or German and visit our countries, and vice versa. Almost 20,000 young French and German students are studying in China, holding the two top spots amongst EU nationals. This interest of the coming generation underlines: Our strategic partnerships with China are here to stay and will continue to flourish.
  • Michael Clauss is German ambassador to China, and Maurice Gourdault-Montagne is French ambassador to China.

China rescues heritage German car-maker. A sign of things to come?

By Jared Zaugg, for CNN

Updated 11:53 AM ET, Mon September 28, 2015

  • Frankfurt, Germany (CNN)It’s considered the most prestigious motor show in the world and it’s also the largest. This year attendance at the Internationale Automobil-Ausstellung, (IAA), in Frankfurt, Germany, exceeded 350,000 people. There were over 1,100 exhibitors from nearly 40 countries representing the automotive industry. Everyone from Ferrari and Bugatti to Ford and Toyota were there putting their best foot forward, showing the world their vision of tomorrow. And everyone was there with China on its mind. Already representing the largest automotive market — and producer — in the world with a growth potential that dwarfs that of America, Europe and Japan combined, China is where the automakers are understandably looking.
  • An interesting example of this is Borgward. Formerly a Bremen-based German automobile manufacturer, Borgward created trucks and “affordable premium” cars for about 30 years from the late 1920s to the early 1960s. In fact, at one point, in the 1950s, Borgward was the third largest automaker in Germany. Now after a half-century hiatus Borgward is back, having been reborn with the help of Chinese investors and is unveiling its first model this year. Representing the new global paradigm, Borgward is considered a German company as its products are designed at its headquarters in Germany but manufactured in China. While some critics refer to this as a Chinese company veiled as German, the same could be said of most leading brands today whether their products are made in China or whether their companies are controlled by the Chinese or both.
  • Examples include Apple, whose products are designed in California but made in China, MG and Rover automobiles that are made in Britain but controlled by Chinese, and divisions of IBM and Motorola that are both owned and manufactured by the Chinese.

Chinese tourists’ love for Germany grows


  • For the first time Chinese tourists have reached one million overnight stays in Germany over a six-month period. It is unknown, however, whether the trend will carry over to the second half of 2015

The Beijing–Berlin Connection

How China and Europe Forged Stronger Ties


  • Chinese President Xi Jinping last visited Merkel on her home turf in 2014 during a high-profile visit to Berlin, where he sought to strengthen what is perhaps China’s strongest partnership in Europe. Speaking at one of Germany’s leading think tanks, he expressed his thanks for the country’s role in helping “Made in China” become more like “Made in Germany,” touting the widely recognized quality and craftsmanship of German goods, and praised the ties that bind Berlin and Beijing together as “two pillars of growth in Asia and Europe.” Trade with China helped Germany weather the global financial crisis and solidify its dominant position within the eurozone. During the course of only a few years, China has transitioned from an average export destination to Europe’s second most important trading partner after the United States.
  • The aftermath of the Iraq war has demonstrated the necessity of cross-national collaboration to solve both regional and global issues. And in the years that followed, European leaders have embraced what they call effective multilateralism as a strategy to solve world problems. China and other emerging powers have long been a focus of this effort to construct a more diverse world order, complete with joint action plans to address climate change, fund development projects, and resolve international security challenges. Chinese multilateral initiatives, such as the antipiracy mission around the Horn of Africa and the creation of the AIIB (despite the nation’s veto powers within the organization), have aligned with European hopes.

Chinese investment in Germany more than doubles in past year

Xinhua and Staff Reporter 2015-08-09

  • Chinese investment is increasing rapidly in Germany and covering various sectors from manufacturing to cultural exchange, a Chinese official said in a recent interview with Xinhua, suggesting newcomers localize themselves when running business abroad. In the first quarter of 2015, Chinese direct investment in Germany amounted to US$210 million, up by 246% from the same period of previous year, data from China’s Ministry of Commerce showed. In 2014, China became the biggest investing country in Germany with a record 190 investment projects.
  • Wang said Chinese investment in Germany covers various sectors including finance, aerospace, telecommunication, steel, renewable energies, restaurants, tourism and cultural exchange. Around 2,000 Chinese companies are doing business in Germany, its biggest trading partner in Europe. Among them are traders, manufacturers, as well as service providers.

Gabriel pens agreement to step up ‘Industry 4.0’ cooperation with China

Date 14.07.2015

  • Shortly after arriving in Beijing on Tuesday, Economy Minister and Vice Chancellor Sigmar Gabriel signed a letter of intent to step up cooperation with China in the development of industrial digital technology. China’s minister for industry and information technology, Miao Wei, also signed the agreement on “intelligent manufacturing” or “Industry 4.0,” which is based on the concepts of the “Internet of Things” and the “Internet of Services.”

China’s road to advanced industry runs through Germany

Published: June 8, 2015

  • A new fund that focuses on developing China’s next generation of industry — so-called Industry 4.0 — through investment in German small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) will soon have its initial $1 billion raised, its founder says.
  • On May 19, the central government unveiled its Made in China 2025 plan — a strategy intended to lead China to cutting-edge innovation and high-quality industrial products. Cai said that he set up the fund after China and Germany signed cooperation guidelines covering many sectors of Industry 4.0 in October, when Premier Li Keqiang visited the European country.
  • China could leap to Industry 4.0 with its advanced Internet network, Cai said. The country has already built technology companies such as Xiaomi Inc. and Huawei Technologies Co. 002502, +1.59% and Internet firms like Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. BABA, +0.54% , Tencent Holdings Ltd. 0700, +0.61% TCEHY, +1.99% and Baidu Inc. BIDU, +4.26%

Third Sino-German economic cooperation park established in China 2015-05-18

  • Government officials from the two countries were present at the unveiling ceremony and seminar, which were attended by more than 150 Chinese and German entrepreneurs. Matthias Machnig, State Secretary at the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy, said the park will provide German companies interested in the Chinese market with a platform for cooperation. An official at China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology said Chinese companies are eager to learn from intelligent manufacturing models from Germany.

China becomes biggest investor in Germany with record project numbers

Xinhua, April 27, 2015

  • China became the biggest investing country in Germany in 2014 with a record number of investment projects, an official report showed on Monday. In last year, China invested in 190 greenfield projects in Europe’s biggest economy, outpacing the United States and Switzerland which ranked the second and third with 168 and 130 projects respectively, said Germany Trade & Invest (GTAI), Germany’s official economic promotion agency. Compared with the previous year, the number of greenfield projects from China increased by 37 percent in 2014.
  • Investment from China supported German economy and its labor market. “With an investment amount of more than 200 million euros (about 216.78 million U.S. dollars), Chinese companies created over 1700 new jobs in Germany last year,” said Cao Yi, Senior Manager of Public Relations in GTAI. According to the report, electronic and semiconductor, mechanical engineering, financial service, information and telecommunication technology and software were the leading sectors that attracted the most Chinese capital. While 51 percent of the Chinese projects were settled for sales and market support, nearly 10 percent of them were invested for manufacturing, research and development.

Germany Courts China to Be Partner in Development of Digital Technologies

Annie D. | Mar 18, 2015 06:42 AM EDT

  • Germany wants China’s cooperation in the development of complex technologies. German Chancellor Angela Merkel said that the two countries can both benefit if they work together in the area of digital economy. At the opening ceremony of the yearly IT fair CeBIT, held on Sunday in Hannover, Germany, Merkel asserted that China is not only viewed by Germany as its most important non-European trading partner, but also a possible strong partner in the development of sophisticated technologies. “The competition in the area of digitalization is large and globally, and there is a lot of strong competitors from China,” Merkel said.
  • Chinese Premier Li Keqiang agrees with Merkel’s assertions and also believes that deeper ties between the two states must be forged. In a video message, Li lauded Germany as “an industrial powerhouse and land of thinkers” and that he is anticipating tighter cooperation between the two with regard “to Web-based, digital and intelligent technologies.” Li also said that the two countries’ digital strategies can be aligned because they complement each other. He also said that he expects “to further strengthen our comprehensive strategic partnership and embark together on a path of win-win cooperation and joint prosperity in the world.”

China’s Alibaba shows off pay-with-your-face technology at IT fair

AFP Mar. 16, 2015, 1:59 PM

  • Hanover (Germany) (AFP) – China’s Internet tycoon Jack Ma, founder of giant online merchant Alibaba, gave a glimpse of the future when he demonstrated a new e-payment system using facial recognition at the CeBIT IT fair in Germany. Criss-crossing the stage in the style of a Silicon Valley pioneer late Sunday, Ma showed off the technology that uses facial recognition from a smartphone camera selfie as a digital signature, saying he had just used it to send a gift to the mayor of the event’s host city of Hanover.
  • The head of German IT industry group BITKOM, Dieter Kempf, said about Alibaba that “the success is impressive, even if it is in large part because suppliers face a very large, hungry Chinese market”.

Strong presence of Chinese tech companies at CEBIT

CeBIT 2015 with huge China presence opens in Germany

Xinhua 2015-03-16

  • CeBIT, the world’s leading trade fair for information and communication technology, will be held this year during March 16-20. More than 3,400 companies from 70 countries regions are expected to showcase thousands of innovations from the digital world. China is the official partner country of CeBIT 2015. Chinese Vice Premier Ma Kai attended the opening ceremony of CeBIT 2015 on Sunday and gave a keynote speech.
  • Over 760 exhibitors from China, featuring a wide range of high-tech firms, including big names like Alibaba, Huawei, Xiaomi and ZTE, are taking part in this year’s CeBIT show, with a theme of “Innovation, Convergence, Cooperation.”

German industries interested in Chinese smart manufacturing

Xinhua and Staff Reporter 2015-03-08

  • The Chinese government announced on Thursday to implement a “Made in China 2025” strategy and develop an “Internet Plus” action plan aiming to boost innovation driven development, apply smart technologies, integrate the mobile internet, cloud computing, big data and the Internet of Things with modern manufacturing, and to upgrade China from a manufacturer of quantity to one of quality. Wolfgang Dorst, the head of the “Industrie 4.0” department of German ICT industry association BITKOM, told Xinhua that the German company was eager to know more about new trends in Chinese manufacturing and was willing to seek more cooperation opportunities. “It (Chinese smart manufacturing) is both a challenge and an opportunity,” Dorst said, adding that despite its strong basis in manufacturing and IT, Germany needed a globalized value chain.

Germany and China discuss media cooperation

Xinhua 2014-12-18

  • Nearly 40 representatives from China and Germany gathered in Beijing on Tuesday to discuss media cooperation. Officials, diplomats and media representatives from both countries attended the 4th China-Germany media dialogue to exchange views on pragmatic cooperation, social media development and media education.
  • The sound development of bilateral ties has brought new vigor to media cooperation between China and Germany, said Cai Mingzhao, director for China’s State Council Information Office. There have been some positive results of media cooperation, such as regular dialogue, joint interviews and joint program production, he said.

German Drug Companies Seek Edge by Targeting China

Bayer and Merck Hope Investments, Acquisitions Will Help Them Crack Fast-Growing Market

By Christopher Alessi Oct. 28, 2014 12:11 p.m. ET

  • FRANKFURT—German pharmaceutical leaders Bayer AG and Merck KGaA are pouring money into Chinese operations as they battle for global market share with a wave of new investments and acquisitions. Up for grabs is a fast-growing €80 billion ($102 billion) pharmaceutical market that will soon rank second in the world behind the U.S.
  • China’s pharmaceutical market, growing roughly 15% annually according to Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Ltd., is large enough that Western entrants haven’t really locked horns yet, said Mr. Rudolph. U.S.-based Pfizer Inc., for example, is a leader in oncology, while Bayer has been a leader in diabetes treatments, he said.

China, Germany sign $18.1 billion deals

2014-10-11 08:38 China Daily Web Editor: Qin Dexing

  • Deals worth more than $18 billion were signed as Premier Li Keqiang met German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Friday in the third round of top-level talks this year between the Asian and European export powerhouses.
  • Airbus SAS and China Aviation Supplies Holding Co signed a general terms agreement for China to buy 70 A320 Airbuses.
  • The two sides also signed a letter of intent reconfirming their intention to set up an A330 completion and delivery center in Tianjin,where an A320 assembly line is already located.
  • Other deals included agriculture, automobiles, telecoms, healthcare and education.
  • China and Germany also signed a wide-ranging guideline covering 110 cooperation agreements over the next five to 10 years, the largest agreement of its kind that China has reached with other countries.

China, Germany vow to lift partnership to higher levels

Editor: zhangyerong 丨Xinhua 10-11-2014 07:35 BJT

  • Chinese Premier Li Keqiang (5th L, front), German Chancellor Angela Merkel (4th R, front) pose for a group photo with government officials from the two countries before the third round of bilateral governmental consultations in Berlin, Germany, Oct. 10, 2014. Li and Merkel co-chaired the consultation here on Friday. (Xinhua/Wang Ye)Chinese Premier Li Keqiang (5th L, front), German Chancellor Angela Merkel (4th R, front) pose for a group photo with government officials from the two countries before the third round of bilateral governmental consultations in Berlin, Germany, Oct. 10, 2014. Li and Merkel co-chaired the consultation here on Friday. (Xinhua/Wang Ye)
  • Stressing that China and Germany are both nations with great influence, Li said bilateral ties have become increasingly strategic and future-oriented since being upgraded to an all-dimensional strategic partnership earlier this year.
  • Beijing, the premier added, is ready to open strategic dialogue with Berlin on diplomatic and security affairs so as to strengthen communication and coordination on international affairs and jointly promote world peace and prosperity.
  • China and Germany should develop an innovative partnership and particularly boost innovative cooperation in such areas as industry, science and technology, agriculture, education, environment protection, urbanization, health care and social security, Li said.
  • Merkel, for her part, said China is an important and reliable partner for Germany, and the two sides have carried out in-depth exchanges and cooperation in various areas and achieved fruitful results.
  • Germany is ready to expand cooperation and develop a win-win innovative partnership with China, said Merkel, adding that her country will deepen cooperation with China in trade, investment, industry, agriculture, science and technology, finance, infrastructure, culture and other areas. The two countries should strengthen coordination on international and regional affairs, and jointly maintain and promote world peace, stability and prosperity, she said.

Volkswagen extends China joint venture by 25 years to tighten market grip

By Andreas Cremer and Jan Schwartz

BERLIN Fri Oct 10, 2014 10:47pm IST

  • Volkswagen (VOWG_p.DE) extended its joint venture with China FAW Group Corp [SASACJ.UL] by 25 years, as the German manufacturer steps up its bid for the global autos throne by targeting an increasing share of the world’s biggest car market.
  • “Enhancing ties with its Chinese partners is a must for VW, which is overly dependent on the market,” Frankfurt-based Bankhaus Metzler analyst Juergen Pieper said.
  • The length of the extension appears customary. VW’s second joint venture with SAIC was extended in 2002 by 28 years until 2030. BMW (BMWG.DE) in June extended its partnership with Brilliance China Automotive Holdings (1114.HK) until 2028. Europe’s largest carmaker said in July it would invest 2 billion euros ($2.53 billion) with FAW to build two more assembly plants. The German group currently operates eight car-making factories and nine component plants in China. VW said it would spend about 100 million euros with SAIC on a new test site and proving ground near the northwestern town of Urumqi where the carmaker opened a factory last year.

The Sino-German innovation partnership

Innovation Partnership is the motto of the current government consultations between Germany and China. But Berlin is also seeking to include the social aspect in the partnership.

Date 09.10.2014 Author Cui Mu / sri

  • “For China it is absolutely essential to strengthen its capacity for innovation,” Conrad told DW. This is because without an increase in added value and productivity China will not be able to maintain its economic growth in the long run, the expert stressed, adding that this is the reason why the Chinese leadership wants to have a strong partner like Germany at its side.
  • For the Germans it is important to expand into economic sectors where they already have a technological advantage. For instance, Chinese markets offer a host of opportunities for German technology in the fields of environment and medicine given that these sectors have yet to be developed in China.
  • The frequently invoked cooperation is, however, always accompanied by concerns over the protection of intellectual property rights. A well-known example is Siemens.
  • “This is a major challenge for the innovation partnership,” says Conrad. When it comes to future cooperation, German companies such as Siemens should learn from the past. “This innovation partnership can only work if the Germans are confident that their intellectual property is thoroughly protected. For that to happen, the legal framework must be strong.”

Chinese premier arrives in Berlin for official visit

10-10-2014 08:16 BJT

  • Li said he was looking forward to making in-depth exchanges of views with German leaders on bilateral ties and issues of common concern, strengthening mutual strategic trust, mapping out medium- and long-term cooperation plans in innovation, economy and trade as well as other areas, enhancing the friendship between the two peoples and promoting the development of the Sino-German relations to a new height.
  • Companies from the two countries will sign cooperation agreements on auto-making, clean energy and mobile communications, among others.

Germany-China consultations to broaden cooperation: Merkel

Xinhua 2014-10-05

  • Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany said Saturday in her weekly video message that the upcoming third Germany-China governmental consultations will broaden bilateral cooperation.
  • Merkel said she expected “very interesting discussions” at the event, which aims to contribute to a better mutual understanding between Germany and China and to promote bilateral cooperation.

Germany: Merkel greets Chinese Premier Li Keqiang

Chinese premier’s Germany visit to boost practical cooperation

Editor: Zhang Jianfeng 丨Xinhua 10-09-2014 13:04 BJT

  • “Germany is the most important cooperation partner of China in Europe. Their cooperation, exceeding China’s cooperation with any other European country in terms of both breadth and depth, has been playing a leading and pilot role in the development of the China-Europe relationship,” said Mei Zhaorong, a former Chinese ambassador to Germany.
  • “From President Xi’s European trip, we can clearly feel that European countries, including Germany, have changed their views on China. They have now realized that China is more and more important to their development,” said Xiong Wei of the China Foreign Affairs University.

China, Germany Pledge to Expand Practical Cooperation

2014-07-08 08:59:48 Web Editor: Luo Bin

  • Premier Li Keqiang says the two sides have also agreed to enter into senior-level financial talks. “We have agreed to launch a top level financial dialogue mechanism as soon as possible. China has already appointed the Bank of China as the RMB clearance bank in Frankfurt. We will allot 80 billion yuan in RMB Qualified Foreign Institutional Investors quota to Germany. It will help to boost the set up of off-shore RMB market in Frankfurt. “
  • For her part, Angela Merkel says she wants to expand cooperation on a larger scale. “The two governments have already established a profound cooperation framework. Now we can bring our cooperation to a wider field. Previously, our focuses were on trade and technology, and now we have included agriculture, food safety, environmental protection etc. China will be a partner country to join next year’s CeBIT expo, it will kick off our cooperation in information and telecommunication. Apart from that, we will have a wider cooperation in other new areas including health care and urbanization.”

VW to Spend $2.7 Billion Building Two Factories in China

By Bloomberg News Jul 7, 2014 12:55 AM ET

  • Volkswagen AG (VOW), which outsold General Motors Co. (GM) in China last year, will invest 2 billion euros ($2.7 billion) to construct two new vehicle plants in the world’s biggest auto market. VW plans to build the plants in the coastal cities of Qingdao and Tianjin, according to the Wolfsburg, Germany-based carmaker, which owns a dozen automotive brands and counts China as its largest market.
  • “China has become our largest and most important market,” VW Chief Executive Officer Martin Winterkorn said in the statement. “To satisfy the demands of our customers in the country, we are engaging in a further substantial expansion of our capacities in China together with our Chinese partner FAW Volkswagen.”

Merkel hails Germany-China ties as major business deals are signed

Date 07.07.2014

  • At their meeting, Merkel and Li witnessed the signing of a contract with European aircraft manufacturer Airbus for 100 helicopters, worth over $400 million (294 million euros). German flagship airline Lufthansa also signed an agreement to establish a new joint venture with its Star Alliance partner Air China.

Germany and China: A special relationship?

Date 04.07.2014

  • Outside of Europe, China is Germany’s most important trading partner. For German plant and machinery installers, the Asian country is their biggest market. But the opposite is also true: Germany is China’s first trading partner in Europe. And since political backing is good for business in China, Merkel is travelling with a high-level business delegation, which includes Frank Appel, the head of Deutsche Post, Joe Kaeser of Siemens, Martin Winterkorn, of Volkswagen, Thomas Enders of Airbus und Jürgen Fitschen of Deutsche Bank.
  • The recently founded Sino-German Advisory Committee on Economy will meet in Beijing for the first time, in the presence of Merkel and her Chinese counterpart, Li Keqiang. Its aim is to identify trade problems between the two countries and “make specific policy recommendations, which will then be analyzed by the respective governments,” Heilmann said.