From January 21 to 23, Mr. Frank Ning, Chairman of Sinochem Group, at the invitation of the World Economic Forum (WEF), attended the WEF Annual Meeting 2019 held in Davos, Switzerland. He expressed his views on such hot topics as global and industrial issues, global trade and investment trends, technological innovation and development, and China’s reform and opening-up on many occasions, which received wide attention and positive comments both inside and outside the Meeting.
On the morning of January 22, local time, as the principal discussant, Mr. Frank Ning attended the public meeting themed on “Building a New Market Structure” and talked about future opportunities and challenges in the global market with guests including Mr. Stephen A. Schwarzman, Chairman of Blackstone Group, Mr. Brian T. Moynihan, Chairman of Bank of America, and Mr. Ruth Porat, Senior Vice President and CFO of Google. Mr. Frank Ning pointed out that the consolidation in many industries in China has not formed monopolies, accommodating fiercer competition which leads to the creation of massive values. Besides, the initial driving force of corporate investment is not the pursuit of scale, but that of market, resources, technology, brand, management, and competitiveness. This is a business model must be followed in order to survive in the Chinese market because the Chinese market is open and competitive. Mr. Frank Ning also stressed that the application of digital technology could enable enterprises to manage larger companies with simpler methods through better information and communication convenience and help to create a more comprehensive industrial ecosystem and advance the internal and external coordination of the value chain.
On the evening of January 22, Mr. Frank Ning was invited to attend the China Business Night and delivered a keynote speech. He said that China had been misunderstood in various aspects, e.g. China was accused of granting special subsidies or bank loans to SOEs and compulsory technology transfer without any data and information evidence, which are neither consistent with the basic business logic nor China’s actual situation. How to eliminate the external misunderstanding of China and strengthen mutual trust is the premise and foundation for better communication and understanding between China and the rest of the world.
On the afternoon of January 23, as the main discussant, Mr. Frank Ning attended at the China Business Council Meeting and discussed with participants the globalization role, path, and impact of Chinese enterprises. He argued that globalization is the path and business model for enterprises to achieve growth. It is an economic issue rather than an ideological one. Globalization has also brought some negative effects, causing some degree of polarization between the rich and the poor. Globalization does not cover all people, but perhaps 90% of them have benefited from it. The Going-global and globalization of Chinese enterprises began with the trade in raw materials and bulk commodities. Initially, people buy raw materials for rough processing from other countries. Later, they expand business abroad to combine with domestic operations. Due to strict supervision, financing difficulties, management, etc., it is also challenging to acquiring enterprises in North America or Europe. Facing this situation and environment changes, Chinese enterprises involved in overseas business should be more cautious in their operations and be fully prepared to overcome difficulties and deal with problems. In the next three to five years, China will continue to deepen its reform and opening-up, which is the determination and idea of several generations of Chinese people.
During the Meeting, Mr. Frank Ning attended the opening ceremony and a special meeting of Chinese leaders, listening to a speech and on-site Q&A from Mr. Wang Qishan, Vice President of the People’s Republic of China. Mr. Frank Ning was also invited to attend such closed-door meetings as the WEF Management Conference, the 2019 Winter Symposium of International Business Council, Bill Gates’ Dialogue with Global Agricultural and Chemical Giants, and Governance Meeting of Chemical and High-end Materials Industry. He also met with Mr. Mark Tucker, Chairman of HSBC Holdings, Mr. Urs Rohner, Chairman of Credit Suisse, Mr. Jean-Sébastien Jacques, CEO of Rio Tinto Group, Mr. Werner Baumann, CEO of Bayer Company, and Mr. Steve Koltes, Co-Chairman of CVC Capital Partners. Fruitful discussions on issues such as the global economic and industrial dynamics, corporate business and development strategies, and bilateral cooperation were conducted.