Reader's Digest > 4 - 17 June

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Reader's Digest, 4 - 17 June

Swiss and Chinese Business Related News in Switzerland and China


Chinese Ambassador Invited Swiss President to his Official Residence
Published by China Daily, 13th June 2016
On 10 June, Chinese Ambassador to Switzerland H.E. Geng Wenbing, invited the family of President of the Swiss Confederation H.E. Johann N. Schneider-Ammann to his official residence. The two sides exchanged points of views on bilateral relations. The President recalled his state visit to China in April this year, and sincerely appreciated for the high standard of courtesy and warm hospitality. Ambassador Geng said that Switzerland was China's first strategic innovation partner, as Ambassador to Switzerland, he would make great effort to promote Sino-Swiss cooperation in various fields in order to achieve more success and make more benefit for people of two countries.

Xia Mingjiu Visits Spain, Switzerland and Japan
Published by China Daily, 13th June 2016
Xia Mingjiu, deputy administrator of the State Administration of Foreign Experts Affairs (SAFEA), visited Spain, Switzerland and Japan from 26 May 26 to 4 June. Xia and the delegation visited famous universities of these countries including the Technical University of Madrid, the University of Barcelona, the University of Zurich and Waseda University. Xia introduced China’s foreign expert recruitment system to further cooperation with these universities.
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Swiss Companies in China Enter a Five-Year Phase of Development Opportunities
Published by, 14th June 2016
With a limited area of over 40,000 square kilometres, Switzerland is not only a permanently neutral state, but also the most competitive nation in the world, depending on its highest level of innovation, a very sophisticated business environment and a strong technological readiness. Switzerland was one of the first countries to establish diplomatic relations with the People’s Republic of China, and it was also one of the founding members of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank. Recently, China and Switzerland established an innovative strategic partnership to promote common development and prosperity. Ms. Pauline Houl, Secretary General of Swiss Chinese Chamber of Commerce Beijing and Mr. Rolf Studer, General Manager of SwissCham Beijing were invited to give an interview on the innovation cooperation and development of Swiss and Chinese companies. Ms. Houl emphasized the importance of Chinese market for Swiss companies and the 13th Five Year Plan in China will definitely bring more development opportunities and space for Swiss enterprises. In April, on the occasion of the State visit of the President of Switzerland Federal Councillor Johann N. Schneider-Ammann, SwissCham Beijing hosted the 4th Sino-Swiss Economic Forum to explore the hot topic - Connectivity for Innovation. Both Ms. Houl and Mr. Studer said that this year, the chamber will continuously host seminars and workshops on innovation and organize more visits of Swiss companies in China in order to strengthen the political and economic bonds between the two countries, stimulate interaction and develop business opportunities.

A Lausanne Native Brings China's Sports to Flourish
Published by, 13th June 2016
Football is becoming more and more popular in China. Olivier Glauser has recognized it. He opens the door to the actual European football cup in France to Chinese companies with his startup Shankai Sports located in Beijing. During this Eurocup, the names of internationally renowned brands like Adidas or Coca-Cola will be seen by everyone again. If you look closely, you will discover in the coming days the name of a company only a few knows outside of China. With the electronics company Hisense, the European Football Union UEFA for the first time in the 56-year history of the tournament works with a Chinese company as a sponsor. The transaction shows the importance that Switzerland has in international sport business, being made possible thanks to the startup Shankai Sports headquartered in Beijing. Olivier Glauser, from Lausanne in Switzerland, is one of the founders of the company. He explains in this article the growing importance of international sport in China and its access for Chinese company.

Huawei Honours Kühne + Nagel
Published by, 10th June 2016
Huawei’s European supply centre has honoured the Swiss company Kühne + Nagel for its logistics services. Among its achievements was very good quality management. The Chinese telecommunications supplier Huawei’s so-called Huawei Europe Supply Center (ESC) in Hungary has honoured the logistics company Kühne + Nagel with the 2015 Quality Excellent Award. It affirms Kühne + Nagel’s good work in the areas of quality management and problem response, according to a statement released by the company from Schindellegi in the canton of Schwyz. The award acknowledges Kühne + Nagel’s logistics services for Huawei, which mainly include shipments from Hungary to Italy, Slovenia, Albania, the Czech Republic, Malta, Greece, Poland, Holland and the Faroe Islands. Kühne + Nagel provides air and overland freight, as well as sea freight logistics for Huawei. The Swiss company reported that it has been providing services for Huawei since 2008.

Swiss Live Marketing Wows China
Published by, 7th June 2016
Expomobilia specializes in exhibition stand construction and creative brand presentation in three dimensions. For Chinese SUV manufacturer Great Wall Motors with its HAVAL brand at the Shanghai Auto Show 2015, Expomobilia occupied an area of 3,000 square meters. The Chinese love Swiss chocolate. Expomobilia’s Managing Director Florian Faber is a popular customer in the shops at Zurich Airport, “No trip to China without some Swiss chocolate in my bag,” says Faber, laughing. Expomobilia specializes in exhibition stand construction and creative brand presentation in three dimensions. Florian Faber or project manager Heinz Auer fly to Shanghai several times at the end of 2014, to get Chinese SUV manufacturer Great Wall Motors with its Haval brand onto their books. Haval plans to have live marketing on an area of 3,000 square meters at the Shanghai Auto Show in 2015 – with the same level of quality as the leading European automotive brands. Time is pressing, and actually the job can't be done. There are delicate on-site negotiations and hour-long telephone conferences before the contract is signed. “The most important thing was to gain the client’s confidence,” says Florian Faber, looking back.

Chinese Produce Light Water in Solothurn
Published by, 3rd June 2016
The Chinese technology company DDW Swiss AG is to set up in the canton of Solothurn, where it plans to produce treated water for the Asian market. The Chinese company DDW Swiss AG plans to open a plant in the canton of Solothurn. The company that specialises in the development of ultralight water will handle production and conduct research there. Specifically, DDW Swiss AG will produce a special drinking water for the Asian market in Schönenwerd SO. Light water is produced when deuterium is partially removed from normal drinking water. The so-called ultralight water, which is reputed to have a positive effect on the body, is fashionable in China. As a first step, the Chinese company Dalian Shiji Xinyuan Technology Development registered its technology on the Chinese market, explained the Solothurn Economic Development Agency in a statement. It was only later that it settled on Switzerland as the ideal location for research, development and production.
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Lucerne Symphony Orchestra
Published by, 2nd June 2016
The Lucerne Symphony Orchestra (LSO) was founded in 1806 and is well known for its capability to balance creativity within tradition and innovation. Its focus on individual composers gives rise to creative cycles of their work, which has the effect of deepening audience appreciation of the music. LSO already went on a two-week tour of China’s most important concert halls back in 2011 and we are happy to welcome them once again here in Shanghai. Hailed for the natural ease of his conducting and the compelling insight of his musicianship, the conductor James Gaffigan continues to attract international attention and is one of the most outstanding American conductors working today. Praised by the Washington Post for combining “staggering technical prowess, a sense of command and depth of expression,” pianist George Li possesses brilliant virtuosity and effortless grace far beyond his years. It will be an unforgettable experience to see the LSO, conductor James Gaffigan and pianist George Li performing pieces together from Weber, Grieg and Dvorak on 28 June at the Shanghai Oriental Art Centre.

The Swiss Graphic Design Exhibition
Published by, 2nd June 2016
The Swiss Graphic Design exhibition, which was last held at 2016 Shanghai Art Design from January to March 2016, will travel to China Academy of Art in Hangzhou from 16 to 30 June. Since the late 1950s, Swiss Graphic Design is internationally known for its high quality, attracting the attention of the audience worldwide. In this exhibition, and overview of the last five years is presented with 77 Swiss graphic designers showing their wide range of different design approaches, techniques and media. The exhibition features 121 pieces from different generations of designers: collecting the different motives and influences, the exhibition offers an insight in the fascination for perfection and craftsmanship that goes into creating visionary new designs.
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Chinese-Europe Plans can Learn Lessons from Swiss Tunnel Project
Published by China Daily, 2nd June 2016
Non-European Union member Switzerland inspired its European neighbors on 1 June by announcing the completion of a 57-km-long rail tunnel, the longest one in the world to date, underneath the Swiss Alps after 17 years of assiduous drilling. Very similar to the Channel Tunnel linking Great Britain and mainland Europe, and thus Asia, mountainous landlocked Switzerland is expected to gain tremendous benefits from the multi-billion euro Gotthard Base Tunnel, which will be used by freight and passenger trains to travel to and from Italy later this year. It is up to the European Union to take institutional action to make changes to allow the challenges to be faced squarely. In this sense, the completion of this Swiss project has offered well-timed food for thought, and highlighted the relationship between China and EU into the context. China and the EU have been in negotiations to set up a joint fund in order to invest in each other's mega-projects. Coincidentally, Switzerland recently became an observer to the 16+1 framework between the Central and East Europe and China, under which both sides have already started infrastructural cooperation. By making good use of its experiences gathered in the tunnel project, Switzerland could join China to provide timely and valuable input to help realize fast development in the sixteen countries in East and Central Europe.
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Engineering / Manufacturing

ChemChina Said to Add Time for U.S. to Review Syngenta Deal
Published by, 14th June 2016
China National Chemical Corp. is seeking more time for the U.S. to complete a national security review of its planned takeover of Swiss chemical company Syngenta AG, according to two people familiar with the matter. The companies resubmitted the USD 43 billion transaction to the government panel that reviews acquisitions of U.S. businesses by foreign investors, said the two people, who asked not to be named because the process is confidential. The Committee on Foreign Investment in the U.S., which can recommend to the president that transactions be blocked if they pose a risk to national security, has a maximum of 75 days to complete reviews. Refiling restarts that clock. Syngenta, which got more than a quarter of its revenue last year from seeds and crop protection in North America, would help transform state-owned ChemChina into the world’s biggest supplier of pesticides and agrochemicals. The bid comes amid a record wave of Chinese investment that has prompted U.S. officials to consider claims that some of the acquisitions could threaten national security.

Chinese Miners Eye Glencore’s Kazakh Gold Operation
Published by China Daily, 9th June 2016
Chinese firms Zhongjin Gold Corp., Shandong Gold Mining Co. and Zijin Mining Group Co. are said to be competing for Glencore’s gold mine in Kazakhstan, which the miner and commodities giant put up for sale earlier this year. Glencore may be seeking about USD 2 billion for its Vasilkovskoye mine, people familiar with the matter told Bloomberg. The sale would bring the Swiss mining giant closer to its target of cutting net debt to below USD 18 billion this year and it would follow similar recent moves, such as its decision to sell an almost 10% stake in its agriculture unit to Canada’s British Columbia Investment Management Corp. for USD 624.9 million in cash on Wednesday. Gold is one of the best-performing commodities of 2016. The yellow metal has gained 18%, the best start to a year in in almost three decades. According to the World Gold Council, the rally has been almost entirely driven by investors in physical gold-backed exchange traded funds and large-scale futures speculators like hedge funds.

Pushing for Change with Passion
Published by China Daily, 3rd June 2016
Joseph Jimenez, CEO of the Swiss pharmaceutical giant Novartis International AG, is a titan in the industry. A few years ago, he was named one of the 25 most influential people in biopharma. Since taking over as CEO in 2010, he has consistently stressed the need for innovation and a new strategy as a "patent cliff" threatened major drugmakers. Novartis had a good year in 2015. Aside from completing our portfolio transformation, which focused on three big divisions-innovative medicines, eye care (Alcon) and generics (Sandoz). Mr. Jimenez explained how important the Chinese market is for the business, and how to see the opportunities and challenges for company amid the Chinese healthcare reform. In fact, the strategic investment in China has reached more than USD 1.2 billion. Novartis has invested more than USD 1 billion in the research center in Shanghai, which officially opened recently. It's a long-term commitment to helping the Novartis business to identify how they can better serve patients in China.

Novartis Cements China Plans as USD 1 Billion Research Center Opens
Published by, 2nd June 2016
Novartis AG employees in Shanghai have a new USD 1 billion home. The seven-building campus on the outskirts of Shanghai is accented by bamboo staircases and tree-lined courtyards. The company said the 1,300-person facility will be its third major research center, after Basel, Switzerland, and Cambridge, Massachusetts. Foreign drugmakers are investing in China because of surging demand for medicines as the incidence of chronic conditions like cancer, heart disease and diabetes rise. The government has provided incentives to encourage more investment in innovation, while Chinese consumers are spending more on health care as their incomes rise. “The commitment that Novartis is making in China is bigger than anybody else in the industry,” Chief Executive Officer Joe Jimenez said in an interview. “We expect Shanghai to ramp up relatively quickly” in terms of drug discovery.
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Bank / Finance / Insurance

Zurich Wins Best Customer Experience Management of the Year at 14th Annual CRE Awards
Published by, 13th June 2016
Zurich Insurance has been honored with the Best Customer Experience Management of the Year award at the 14th Annual Customer Relationship Excellence Awards. Organized by the Asia Pacific Customer Service Consortium (APCSC), the Awards recognize industry leaders for their customer centric service innovation and outstanding effort. As Mr. Eric Hui, Chief Executive Officer of Zurich Insurance Company Ltd, General Insurance Hong Kong, shared, "It has always been difficult to quantify the service quality output of our customer-facing units. The coveted award is a testament to all of our staff's hard work, and gives validation that customer centricity is in the DNA of each and every Zurich staff. Through receiving this award, we look forward to customers understanding more about Zurich's high standards in service quality and our brand promise of "For those who truly love", meaning Zurich is always there for customers, when they need us to protect what they value most in life."
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Hospitality / Tourism / Retails

TAG Heuer Pushing Brand in China
Published by, 12th June 2016
The head of luxury group LVMH's Swiss watchmaking business said the company is pushing its TAG Heuer brand in the Chinese market, as rivals scale back their investments due to weaker demand. "We're pushing a lot, we're especially pushing now, much more than ever because all the brands are disinvesting," TAG Heuer Chief Executive Jean-Claude Biver said in an interview. "This means our investment now becomes much stronger." TAG has only minimal exposure to China and Hong Kong and its growth this year is mainly from the United States, Britain, Japan and Australia, Biver said in Montreal, during a company event for the Canadian Grand Prix. Biver said TAG's sales grew 20 percent during the first five months of 2016, compared to the same period in 2015, on greater demand from the four countries and for its "smartwatches" that connect to the Internet. While Biver previously expected to sell 40,000 to 50,000 of the connected watches, he said he now hopes to deliver 60,000 and is facing demand for 80,000 watches.

Nestlé Banks on Alibaba to Boost Disappointing Business in China
Published by China Daily, 7th June 2016
Nestlé SA and Alibaba Group Holding Ltd have launched a digital commerce and marketing campaign, a move the Swiss food giant hopes will boost its disappointing business in China through innovation in products and digital distribution channels. The six-month joint campaign will leverage Alibaba's online and mobile marketplaces, media platform and rural services. According to Nestlé, it will feature 154 products from 30 brands, 67 of which will be introduced to Chinese consumers for the first time. Nestlé's growth had been slowing in the past few years in China, as the company said it has not reacted quickly enough to trends like e-commerce and healthier eating. Nestlé said its Chinese Yinlu congee brand still faces challenges as consumers shift to more premium products. "Consumers in China are very discerning and adapting to technology faster than almost anywhere else in the world," said Wan Ling Martello, executive vice-president responsible for Nestlé's Asia, Oceania and sub-Saharan Africa regions who is also on Alibaba's board. Martello said at an investment meeting in May that despite the slowdown in Chinese economy and the country's fast-moving consumer goods sector, the country remains a great consumer story thanks to its emerging middle class and their growing disposable income.
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Legal / Trade / Consulting / Services

Grand Opening of Byreals & Urans Bonded Store - Zhenjiang Cross-border Retail Platform
Published by, 16th June 2016
Byreals & Urans Bonded Store, the Zhenjiang cross-border retail platform, its opening ceremony and launching of Zhenjiang cross-border industrial projects are held in SSZEIP on 13 June. It is the initial cooperation between Zhenjiang and Urans Group to explore “Zhenjiang Mode” cross-border E-commerce, and an integrated service platform with the total investment of RMB a billion will be launched afterwards so as to stimulate the development of import trade value no less than RMB 10 billion in Zhenjiang. The ceremony has been witnessed by nearly 200 guests, including Mr. GUO Jian, Mr. SHAO Bing and Mr. ZHU Xiaoyang and other civil service officials in Zhenjiang New Area, and representatives from national and regional financing institutions such as Huarong Securities, Ping An Bank, Cybernaut Investment, etc., from global suppliers and retailers such as Costco, Wumart and NewHuadu Industrial Group etc., as well as from logistics storage companies like Cosco, Kerry Logistics etc.

JSAID Initiated Comprehensive Strategic Cooperation with Sinonex GmbH
Published by, 1st June 2016
JSAID signed the strategic cooperation agreement on 26 May with Sinonex GmbH in Zurich Switzerland. Based in Switzerland, Sinonex is committed to facilitating Sino-foreign cooperation by introducing overseas high-quality startups into China as well as assisting promising Chinese enterprises in tapping into the European market, by means of creating opportunities for exchanges, establishing cooperative networks, and integrating innovative resources both at home and from abroad. Last month was the first time JSAID joined hands with Sinonex in co-hosting the 2016 Sino-Swiss International Technology Exchanging Event in SSZEIP, in which 7 Swiss startups as Biowatch, Entomeal, FixPosition, etc made great impressions to all the participants while having in-depth exchanges with local enterprises and institutes. It is the event along with ever-enhancing communication, mutual understanding and trust that initiates the comprehensive strategic cooperation between both parties.
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