Merkel's visit to China to pay off for German firms
19 May 2006, BEIJING - German businesses expected to garner several hundreds of millions of euros in contracts on the occasion of Chancellor Angela Merkel's first visit to China.
19 May 2006
BEIJING - German businesses expected to garner several hundreds of millions of euros in contracts on the occasion of Chancellor Angela Merkel's first visit to China.
Negotiations on the deals continued Friday in Beijing and were expected to go "until the last minute" ahead of Merkel's arrival Sunday for a three-day visit, informed sources told Deutsche Presse-Agentur dpa.
The talks include the wish by BASF, the world's largest chemical company, to enlarge its plant in the eastern Chinese city of Nanjing while the Siemens electronics company wants to produce at least 200 locomotives with its partner in Zhuzhou in Hunan province.
Both deals are among the roughly 10 contracts in the works that were due to be signed Monday in the presence of Merkel and Chinese Prime Minister Wen Jiabao in the Great Hall of the People.
While a ride Tuesday on a German magnetic-levitation train in Shanghai might be in the works for Merkel, talks on extending the 30-kilometre airport line by 175 kilometres to the city of Hangzhou have not achieved any breakthroughs for the Germans.
Construction was slated to begin on the new 35-billion-yuan (4.37-billion-dollar) stretch this year, and its completion was foreseen for the World Expo in 2010.
In deals likely to be signed, however, BASF is seeking a deal with its Chinese partner Sinopec to expand their joint factory in Nanjing, which produces ethylene.
Siemens is negotiating with Zhuzhou Electric Locomotive Works on building the train engines, but a number of financing questions remained to be ironed out, dpa learned from the Chinese company.
Both firms signed a 447-million-dollar contract in 2004 for the production of 180 larger locomotives.
Subject: German news