China welcomes companies from home and abroad to participate in the reform of centrally administered State-owned enterprises by forming equity joint ventures and cooperating in industrial upgrading, said the country's top regulator for State assets on Tuesday.
Xiao Yaqing, chairman of the State-owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission, said the SOEs will expand their collaboration with capable global companies and domestic private companies to form commercial groups to develop third-party markets, especially those involved in the Belt and Road Initiative.
"We will also encourage central SOEs to enlarge their import categories to meet their demand for industrial upgrading and the needs of domestic consumers in order to further integrate into the global value chain," Xiao said at a business conference during the first China International Import Expo in Shanghai.
Thirteen central SOEs - including China FAW Group, China National Cereals, Oils and Foodstuffs Corp, and State Grid - signed import, service and technology cooperation deals with global companies such as ABB Group, Volkswagen AG and Westinghouse Electric Corp during the conference.
China State Shipbuilding Corp signed a contract with Italy-based Fincantieri SpA and Carnival Corp &plc of the United States and Britain to build two large luxury cruise ships and options on four others during the meeting.
Rolls-Royce plc, the British aircraft engine manufacturer, signed an engine and long-term maintenance service agreement with China Eastern Airlines involving the airline's 20 Airbus A350-900 aircraft, with a total contract value of over $1.45 billion.
Tang Bing, executive vice-president of China Eastern, said the aircraft and service package will help the company speed up its global expansion to further compete with other established rivals.
China Poly Group Corp sealed a deal with Standard Chartered Bank to purchase $1.6 billion worth of precious metals from the British banking and financial services group over the next two years.
The commission has organized a general purchasing group formed by China's centrally administered SOEs to participate in the ongoing expo.
It will take part in 58 activities during the event.
"China's proposal to import more advanced industrial goods and explore third-party market cooperation via joint ventures and other types of partnerships with global companies can bring benefits to both Western and developing countries, without causing a clash of interests," said Li Jin, chief researcher at the China Enterprise Research Institute.
He said projects involving China, France and some French-speaking African countries are a typical example of such collaboration.