Dear Members and friends of FBCB,
Another Covid-summer has passed and everyone is hoping there won’t be a third one. The situation is unbearable for those who need to travel. The number of foreigners in China is decreasing rapidly every month as many choose to not return or cannot return due to travel restrictions. China's zero-tolerance policy for new cases is still in effect and heavy measures are taken against all covid occurrences.
The Beijing Olympics and Paralympics are set to take place in February, and the city is well prepared. However, whether there will be any spectators remains to be seen. We may have to wait until December or even January to find out. So far, we know that the “Olympic Bubble” will wall off China’s 1.4 billion citizens from everyone related to the event - athletes, judges, drivers, guides, journalists and others. Travel restrictions will likely not be lifted for the Olympics or after it. They will only ease up when it’s safe to do so from China's perspective.
Despite the pandemic, China's economy is doing well. GDP growth was up to 7.9% in Q2 this year. Intensity of reforms in China has remained high across the board. The commitment to carbon neutrality by 2060 can be viewed as a strong signal of commitment to mitigating climate change. China also vows to continue to open up its financial sector and improve regulation for foreign banks and insurance firms entering the market. Digitalization of government services has accelerated as the pandemic has created demand for contactless services - potentially boosting productivity.
As China grows wealthier as a country, so does the gap between the rich and the poor, bringing potential challenges to societal stability. Premier Li Keqiang has revealed that 600 million citizens only earn about 1,000 yuan (EUR 132) a month, indicating the extent of the problem. President Xi Jinping led a meeting in mid-August during which it was emphasized how the country would focus on enabling moderate wealth for all, rather than just the few. Planned measures included curbs on “excessive” income and encouraging the wealthy to give more back to the society.
China remains an attractive destination for Finnish companies for several reasons. In addition to the extremely good relations between the two countries, Finland has a lot to offer in these circumstances: knowhow in bio-economy, clean technology, and digitalization - just to mention a few. A strong example of promoting Finnish digital technology knowhow is definitely our member Junction (hackathon). Read more about how they do it in China on our guest-writer section.
In addition, in September we have plenty of opportunities for Finnish companies as CIFTIS (China International Fair for Trade in Services), WWSE (World Winter Sport Expo), Beijing Design Week (Helsinki Design Week as the Theme) and Zhongguangcun Forum are all taking place here in Beijing. Something for all Finnish companies to consider participating - online or offline.
Ambassador Jarno Syrjala's four-year post has come to an end. He was, on his last day in China, awarded by the Confederation of Finnish Industries (EK) as Ambassador of the year 2021 in large/well-established markets with these remarks: "Jarno Syrjälä, Ambassador to China, has set an outstanding example in helping export businesses by offering both his political and economic expertise. Syrjälä’s hands-on approach and concrete help has been indispensable, as the borders of China have been closed during the COVID pandemic. Jarno Syrjälä has always been available to assist companies in both problem solving as well as promoting new business opportunities."
On behalf of FBCB I thank Ambassador Syrjala for the close cooperation and wonderful support to FBCB and companies during these past four years!
Executive Director, FBCB
|Farewell greetings from Ambassador Jarno Syrjala|
Dear Members of the Finnish Business Council in Beijing,
On the publication date of this Newsletter, 31 August 2021, I will officially end my term as Ambassador of Finland to China. I leave this position knowing that the relationship between our two countries is even stronger than when I arrived.
I want to thank the great team at the Embassy of Finland in Beijing, as well as my colleagues in Shanghai and Hong Kong, who have worked tirelessly with unmatched dedication and professionalism to enhance the ties between Finland and China. The relationship is secure in their good hands.
My time as Ambassador has given me the chance to meet so many talented and engaging people, both in person and virtually, in the vast country of China. As I travelled around, I was amazed by both the beauty of the country and the character of its citizens. I was always grateful for the kindness and hospitality of Chinese people.
Team Finland cooperation has been an important part of our work during my term. Sometimes I may have been even too passionate about it. I would like to take this opportunity to thank the members of the Finnish Business Council in Beijing for the excellent cooperation I have enjoyed during my whole tenure. The Council is one of the closest partners of the Embassy when it comes to promoting Finnish business interests in China. Together with the other members of the Team Finland China network – Consulates General in Shanghai and Hong Kong, Business Finland, Finnish Business Councils in Shanghai and Guangdong, and Finnish Chamber of Commerce in Hong Kong – we have done our utmost to ensure that Finnish companies are given the best possible circumstances for making the most of the opportunities in the Chinese markets.
My term as Ambassador was also a time of unprecedented challenges, and I’m proud to say we, as Team Finland China, rose to meet them together. While the pandemic has caused disruption in our lives, it has also provided opportunities for new ways of interacting, and for new ways of doing business.
Our hard work has not been left unnoticed. On 26 August the Confederation of Finnish Industries granted its Ambassador Award to us for our effective and business-oriented contributions. This is truly a great honor, and this Award belongs to everyone in the Team Finland China network who has contributed to our work during the years!
Thank you, Team Finland China!
Ambassador of Finland to China
|Beijing Design Week - Helsinki Theme September 18|
WELCOME TO BEIJING DESIGN WEEK
2021 BUSINESS SEMINARS
Sustainable & Smart City Business Seminar
10:15 - 12:15 (Beijing Time UTC +8) /
05:15 - 07:15 (Helsinki Time UTC +3)
Innovations in Education Business Seminar
13:15 - 14:45 (Beijing Time UTC +8) /
08:15 - 09:45 (Helsinki Time UTC +3)
|Guest Writer Junction: Europe’s largest hackathon launched its China project in Chengdu|
In April 2021, Junction, Europe’s largest hackathon launched its latest international project “Junction China” in Chengdu after a few events successfully held in China. It is a movement of another symbolic Finnish innovation event entering China, after Slush back in the year 2015. The project aims to bring the unique Junction experience and the Finnish innovation & startup spirits into China, and create an international technology & innovation collaboration platform through linking universities, enterprises and talents across China and the world.
Photo below: Junction 2016 Helsinki
Junction is a 48-hour international hackathon organized annually in Helsinki, Finland. It is one of the key projects incubated in the Aalto Entrepreneur Society (Aaltoes). The event brings together developers, designers, and entrepreneurs from around the world and helps them build solutions to real-world challenges from local and multinational companies. It is also a unique experience and exchanging platform for tech enterprises and talents. Junction was first hosted in the year 2015 in Kattilahalli, Helsinki. Till today the community already reached over 20000 talents of 107 different nationalities from over 510 universities globally, with over 200 companies from different sectors collaborated. Junction is also the organizer of Hel Tech, a non-profit tech meetup organized monthly in Helsinki, Finland.
Junction has already operated 3 major events in China, collaborated with key partners such as China Mobile, Tencent Game, and Nokia Shanghai Bell. Those events focused on some of the cutting-edge tech sectors like AI, Big data, Smart infrastructure, Health Tech, etc. Those events attracted over 600 Chinese talents from over 35 different universities and gained exceptional attention and feedback from both participants and local partners.
Photos below from Photo: JunctionX Tianjin
“Through operate different Junction events in China, we will build up a great talent & innovation ecosystem and constantly interact with the Junction global community. Junction China will also work as an exchanging and collaboration platform between the Finnish and Chinese innovation and business ecosystems.” Said Topi Guo, Head of Junction China (photo below).
Author: Topi Guo
Head of Junction China
|Women in Business August 14|
Finnish Business Council Beijing Women-in-Business event is all about sharing insights and encouraging career stories of powerful women. This time Executive Director Ulla Nurmenniemi had invited Li Zhang, Vice President of IDG China to share her story. Ms Zhang has an interesting background of being a diplomat at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of China and the Chinese Embassy in Finland.
|Visit to Shougang July 26|
Finnish Business Council Beijing visited at Beijing Shougang Olympic Park. ED Ulla Nurmenniemi with Chairman Juha Tuominen are working for the future cooperation and opportunities for Finnish sport related companies with local government. After Olympics this park in Shijingshan District Development Zone will serve as an international cultural and sports village, and therefore offers preferential policies and support for foreign companies. If your company is interested in opportunities in this area, you can contact email@example.com.
|Guangzhou Building Material Exhibition July 20-22|
Finnish Business Council Beijing Executive director Ulla Nurmenniemi and Chairman Juha Tuominen participated Guangzhou Building Material Exhibition to support Finnish painting company Teknos first launch in household interior paint sector in China. Teknos has also developed a air-purifying indoor paint. Their motto is "We make the world last longer".
|Shijiazhuang working visit July 5-7|
Finnish Business Council Beijing together with other Nordic Chamber representatives and member companies including Ivana Helsinki , Masercata Planora, had a two-day working visit to Shijiazhuang. Delegation was invited by local government and Hebei-EU Cooperation Center (HBEUCC). Center is founded by FBCB member company ChaTai Consulting Charles Dong and Tara Joensuu to serve as a platform between Nordic companies and Shijiazhuang.
|Does your company need more visibility and contacts in China?|
Finnish Business Council Beijing is part of Team Finland in China, and an outstanding platform for all Finnish businesses in China. For those companies which need more visibility, we have launched a Premium Membership. It's an upgrade from normal membership, as you can see from the table below.
For those companies in Finland, who are planning to expand their businesses to China, or are in the early stage and don't have an office in China yet, we have a distant membership. It's called Proxy Membership. A very cost-effective way to make your company known to a large audience, and get essential contacts for your future.
See all membership options HERE
Premium Membership benefits:
- Get your logo on frontpage of FBCB website
- Get your logo on all newsletters and event invitations
- Get an advertisement to FBCB webpage
- Write an article to FBCB Newsletter once a year
- Organize an event for other members and other people using FBCB event platform once a year
PLUS normal Membership benefits:
- Network opportunities with all other member companies
- Keep updated what's happening in China-Finnish business
- Make new business contacts
- Access FBCB events with member price or free of charge, access member-only events
- Enjoy discounts of various service and product providers (hotels, health care, tailor, scarfs, air purifiers, etc)
- Get your company logo, description and key products to membership directory in FBCB website
Proxy membership benefits:
- Get monthly newsletter
- Get one article to newsletter when joining
- Network opportunities with all other member companies through FBCB
- Keep updated what's happening in China-Finnish business
- Make new business contacts
- When visiting in Beijing, access events with member price or free of charge, access member-only events
- Enjoy discounts of various service providers in Beijing (e.g.hotels)
- Get company logo, description and key products to membership directory on FBCB website
CONTACT for more information:
Ulla Nurmenniemi, Executive Director, FBCB
|Meet the board term 2021-2022|
|FBCS, FBCGD and FinnCham HK events: Click the logo below|