Half a billion euros in Chinese orders for Dutch businesses

Dutch and Chinese businesses have signed a number of contracts and cooperation agreements during development minister Lilianne Ploumen’s trade mission to China. In total, the twelve agreements are worth at least half a billion euros. It is expected that their value will continue to rise over the coming years. ‘This demonstrates yet again the importance of Dutch businesses looking beyond our borders. It is also testament to the high quality and innovative nature of the products and services they offer,’ said Ms Ploumen, the Minister for Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation.

Contracts have been agreed in a range of sectors. For example, Ms Ploumen attended the signing of a major deal between the Chinese technology giant SMIC and Eindhoven’s ASML. Meetings with representatives of other industries – including shipbuilding, telecoms, ice rink construction and the manufacture of tubing for transport systems – were equally successful. Ms Ploumen visited Shanghai and Beijing, where she met with Vice Minister of Commerce Zhong Shan. ‘We are both keen to take our countries’ relationship to a new level in trade and in other areas,’ Ms Ploumen said.

Ms Ploumen frequently heads trade missions, especially to growth markets like China. On this occasion she was accompanied by representatives of 30 businesses, many of them SMEs. ‘We are of course here because of the opportunities. But we also have a contribution to make. For example, we have discussed the issues of corporate social responsibility (CSR) and sustainable production,’ said Ms Ploumen. ‘It’s not just about doing business; the impact it has on people’s working and living conditions is also important.’

The good relations China and the Netherlands enjoy make it easier to address a wider range of issues, for example relating to development cooperation. In that connection, in her speech at the renowned Fudan University in Shanghai Ms Ploumen referred to the common ground shared by Chinese and Dutch policy on aid, trade and investment policy.

Ms Ploumen’s trade mission ended this morning in Beijing, where she attended the municipality of Amsterdam’s China Holland Business Summit. The mayor of Amsterdam, Eberhard van der Laan, is currently heading a large trade delegation to China. He and Ms Ploumen have been lending each other’s missions support.