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Survey: German Companies in China Face Stiff Competition, Geopolitical Risks, and Economic Headwinds

A survey by the German Chamber of Commerce Abroad found that 46% of German companies operating in China believe that their Chinese competitors will become leaders in their respective industries within the next 5 years. Some 37% of surveyed companies feel that innovativeness in the Chinese market makes doing business in China increasingly attractive, and 11% of German automotive companies in China view their Chinese competitors as already being the innovation leaders in their industry.

About 83% of German companies surveyed believe that China’s economy is declining, though 64% anticipate this downward trend being just a temporary 2-3 year slowdown. Some 42% of respondents expect positive developments in Chinese industry this year.

The investment outlook among surveyed companies was mixed – 54% think that China’s investment appeal is falling, while a similar percentage plan to increase investment in China over the next 2 years. Risks are top of mind, with about 37% of respondents reportedly taking action to mitigate geopolitical risks and some 20% taking action to mitigate risks related to China’s economy.

Source: German Chamber of Commerce in China, January 24, 2024