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Foreign-funded enterprises in district optimistic on growth

China Daily Global | Updated:Nov 23, 2020

Multinational companies are positive about their future growth in Baoshan district, a key area for economic development in Shanghai.

Fronius China, an innovative welding, solar energy, and battery charging solutions provider located in the district, said that recent industrial transformation and upgrading will bring new opportunities in the future.

In recent years, Baoshan has been actively seeking a transformation and new breakthroughs.

The district has mapped out a clear plan for its future development with industrial parks to become well established, said Tony Tong, managing director of Fronius China.

"We found that the positioning and industrial development plan are highly relevant to our business, particularly in the fields of smart manufacturing and industrial internet of things," Tong said.

Fronius China is a wholly owned subsidiary of Fronius International. It moved to the Shanghai Industrial Park of Robotics in Baoshan in October 2018.

The robotics park is one of Shanghai's characteristic parks and also a key area for the city's development in smart manufacturing.

As a major venue for Baoshan to implement industrial transformation, the park is expected to develop into an agglomeration area for robotics and smart manufacturing industries, local officials said.

So far, a total of 211 large-scale enterprises have settled in the Shanghai Industrial Park of Robotics. Of them, more than one-third are robotics and smart manufacturing enterprises.

The main business income of the park reached 17.6 billion yuan ($2.68 billion) in 2019, according to the park's officials.

The agglomeration of industries, a talent pool and preferential policies in Baoshan will provide great help for enterprises' development, Tong said.

"The park gathers a large number of enterprises covering the whole industrial chain, such as our global partner Fanuc. It also includes a number of other supporting industries," he added.

The company's welding products are widely used in automobiles, railway construction and aerospace. In 2019, the sales revenue of Fronius China reached 230 million yuan.

Despite the negative effects brought by the novel coronavirus pandemic, the company not only aims to maintain stable growth but is also actively seeking new opportunities and business expansion, according to Tong.

Tong's view is echoed by executives of other foreign-funded enterprises.

Peter Legner, CEO of Schenck Shanghai Machinery, said the geographical advantages and development positioning of Baoshan allow the company to find ideal talents and major customers, especially in the fields of automation and aviation.

In September 2013, the company completed construction on a new factory in Baoshan Industrial Park, covering an area of 21,000 square meters.

Legner said the company has established close ties with businesses in Baoshan and at the industrial park. and it will continue to look for new investment opportunities to expand its business in China.

The Shanghai operations of Schenck not only include manufacturing, but also the development of new products suitable for the Chinese market together with its Germany headquarters.

So far, Shanghai has become the business center for Schenck in Asia, which is responsible for research and development, production, sales and services in the Asia-Pacific region.

Japanese optical film vacuum coating equipment manufacturer Optorun is also among the foreign-funded enterprises that have settled in Baoshan.

In October 2018, Optorun China was recognized as a model foreign-funded R&D center by the city. In July 2019, it was recognized as a model headquarters of multinational companies.

The Shanghai branch is the largest subsidiary invested in by Optorun and is also an important R&D and production base of the group. Over the years, the company has made a series of key technological breakthroughs.

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