Wen opens Hannover showcase of technology with German chancellor
China will have "a great opportunity" to show it's a powerhouse of innovation at one of theworld's key technology fairs, a leading organizer of the event said.
The Hannover Messe is the world's foremost technology fair and this year's event, opened byPremier Wen Jiabao and German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Sunday, will feature China'sbiggest ever industrial presentation abroad.
A Volkswagen battery-powered car is assembled on Friday in Hannover, Germany, ahead of the city'smajor technology fair. Jochen Luebke / Agence France-Presse
"Chinese exhibitors will have a great opportunity to show the world how innovative they are,"Wolfram von Fritsch, board chairman of the Deutsche Messe (Fair) and one of the keyorganizers of the Hannover event, said.
"And they are good business partners, no longer just a market where you sell products. Theycan show how they are market leaders and technological leaders in many aspects as well,"Fritsch said.
Under the theme "Green Intelligence", the Messe, ending on Friday, will hold eight flagship fairson industrial technology with an aim to help firms achieve higher output with lower energy costs.
China has been selected as a partner country, giving it a prestigious position at the fair.
"We are extremely pleased at having China as our partner. The timing could not be better,"Fritsch added. "Our goal is to spotlight innovation and bring customers together."
The annual event, held since 1947, has become a leading showcase for global industrial andtechnological development. China was the partner country once before, in 1987.
The fair hopes to attract some 5,000 exhibitors from 65 countries and regions. Almost half ofthese exhibitors come from outside Germany, nearly 460 from China.
The Chinese partnership will highlight the importance of green technology as the country tries tochange its growth model to one that is more sustainable.
China, according to the 12th Five-Year-Plan (2011-15) unveiled last year, will focus more ongreen energy and innovation, rather than labor-intensive sectors.
"The new Five-Year Plan from China fits in perfectly with the Hannover theme," Fritsch said.
There was "a long waiting list of countries" that wanted to be the Messe's partner country, "but inthis case China was the perfect fit for us".
Michael Schumann, head of German-Chinese Joint Initiatives at the Federal Association forEconomic Development and Foreign Trade, said this year's Messe would be "a unique chance"to see "what great opportunities can stem from trading with, and partnering, Chinesecompanies".
The association now has about 1,200 member companies to assist in economic developmentand foreign trade.
The association has an office in Shanghai and it organizes business delegations each year fromall fields of industry. It also assists Chinese companies to find partners when the conductbusiness, or invest, in Germany.
Amid the debt crisis in Europe, Schumann said companies are "lacking the financial and humanresources to build large enterprises based on their intellectual property".
"Here I see a unique chance for the German and Chinese economy to dovetail in the future," hesaid.
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