Entrepreneurs from China and seven Portuguese-speaking countries have gathered in Macao to discuss how to enhance business cooperation. With multi-lateral trade growing steadily, attendees say they have high expectations for the future.
Charles Shi manages a building engineering company in Macao. The mainland businessman came to Macao in 2012, as he saw a big opportunity in developing real estate in Portuguese-speaking countries. His company entered Mozambique in 2014. The houses they built, from design, to the quality and pace of construction, all impressed the Mozambican government and people.
"We do infrastructure and housing construction projects in Mozambique and Timor-Leste. The market is very big. The local building materials and levels are lagging behind China. So we bring the advanced technology there. This can help them develop faster in infrastructure construction," said Charles Shi, chairman of Charlestong Engineering Technology & Consulting Ltd.
On Wednesday, entrepreneurs and financiers from China and Portuguese-speaking countries gathered in Macao to seek deeper business cooperation.
At the conference, Charles' company signed contracts with the Mozambican government to build 35,000 social housing units by 2019. The Forum Macao has provided a great platform to allow for enterprises to connect with each other.
"Macao has unique and irreplaceable advantages that make it act as a platform for economic and trade co–operation between China and Portuguese-speaking countries. The regular forums and meetings here allow entrepreneurs to understand investment policies, business environments in Portuguese-speaking countries, and create more opportunities for entrepreneurs to get to know each other. As time goes by, Macao's role as a platform will be greater," said Chang Hexi, Secretary-General of Permanent Secretariat to Forum Macao.
In fact, more and more Chinese enterprises have seen business opportunities in Portuguese-speaking countries. Over 400 Chinese companies have entered the large consumer market. China's investment in these countries reached 6.3 billion
US dollars in 2015, covering sectors including architecture, manufacture and agriculture.
Beijing said it would further support Macao's role as a platform between China and Portuguese-speaking countries. It's optimistic that from here, more and more Chinese entrepreneurs will find business opportunities in these countries and will expand into new markets.