European business leaders and analysts are confident about the prospects for China’s economy in 2015.
“China has a very robust plan and a seamless execution of its economic transformation plan. This was the solid foundation that economic development had been successfully built on during the last 30 years and it will be a solid base for progress in the future,” president of the Swiss-Chinese Chamber of Commerce Kurt Haerri said.
“Further, it shall be noticed that China — unlike many countries in the West — has a long-term view and is therefore addressing the need for reforms timely and thoroughly,” Haerri added.
Stephen Phillips, chief executive at the China Britain Business Council echoed that he is optimistic about the prospects for China’s economic transformation.
“We have seen encouraging signs to indicate that things are heading in the right direction. This will be a long process and will require sustained momentum,” Phillips said.
While analysts realize that Chinese economic growth is slowing, some also point out that business opportunities are bigger than before.
Nicolas Musy, managing director of the nonprofit organization Swiss Center Shanghai, said that Swiss companies are actually experiencing a faster expansion of their businesses than before.
“The reason is that seven percent growth today represents more added GDP than 11 percent growth in 2008, so business opportunities for growth are actually bigger now than five years ago,” Musy added.
“It is important and an opportunity for the rest of the world that China succeeds in its transition to having a much bigger part of its GDP based on domestic and private consumption rather than on government based investment,” said Musy.
As the power house of the global economy, China is a major focus of the annual meeting of the World Economic Forum from Jan 21-24 in Davos, Switzerland.
Premier Li Keqiang will give a keynote speech and over 2,500 participants from more than 140 countries representing governments, international organizations, businesses, academia, civil society and the media are expected to attend this year’s Davos meeting.
“I think the world, or a big part of it, has not come to terms with the fact that China’s economy is unlikely to grow as fast as it used to. The recalibration process of the Chinese economy will take time. It’s a balancing act that needs very careful maneuvering,” Kamel Mellahi, professor of strategic management at Warwick Business School in Britain, said.
Philip Koch, deputy director of the International Department at Hamburg Chamber of Commerce, said, China’s government is well aware of the challenges and is working hard on the required adjustments of its economic system, as Premier Li explained thoroughly in his speech at the sixth “Hamburg Summit: China meets Europe” in October 2014.