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Chinese business leaders visit Singapore to discuss cooperation

Updated: Nov 30,2014 11:38 AM     Xinhua

SINGAPORE — A delegation of top business leaders from China Entrepreneur Club visited Singapore on Nov 28-29 to discuss potential cooperation.

Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong met them on Nov 28, and the business leaders joined their Singaporean counterparts at a roundtable at the Singapore Business Federation on Nov 29.

The Singapore prime minister said that Chinese companies venturing overseas can explore the regional market from Singapore, the China Entrepreneur Club said in a press release issued on Nov 29.

“It is a good idea to explore the international market from Singapore,” he was quoted as saying.

S.S. Teo, chairman of the Singapore Business Federation, said that more than 5,200 Chinese enterprises have set up subsidiaries or offices in Singapore as more and more Chinese firms go international.

China is expected to become a net supplier of foreign direct investment in the coming years as the outflow from China exceed inflow into China.

Ma Weihua, chairman of Wing Lung Bank and executive chairman of the China Entrepreneur Club, shared his views on China’s “new norm “ of slower growth.

It is natural for China’s economic growth to slow down after more than 30 years of super fast growth, as the factors supporting such growth are no longer there. However, even the present growth of close to 7.5 percent is the fastest among the major economies.

China has to restructure its economy and seek new drivers of growth so that it can be sustainable. In this process, there will be potential opportunities even for some of the players to “ overtake others around the corner,” he said.

The former president of the China Merchants Bank, one of the largest commercial lenders in China, highlighted potential areas of opportunities such as the internationalization of the Chinese yuan, international cooperation along the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road, the services sector, real estate, new technology and the IT-related economy.

He said that the rise of the Internet does not mean an end to the banking industry but that it will have to adapt to the new changes brought about by the Internet.

Members of the delegation include Mengniu Diary founder Niu Gensheng, China Huiyuan Juice Group chairman Zhu Xinli, and Wu Jianmin, executive vice chairman of the China Entrepreneur Club and China’s former ambassador to France.

The delegation is expected to leave for Australia on Nov 30.