SwissCham Shanghai is offering a general overview on relevant surveys and market research analysis related to the Sino-Swiss business, economic and trade community.

Lockdown Impact Survey Analysis – April 11, 2022

A survey conducted by SwissCham Shanghai and the Consulate General of Switzerland reveals that the recent lockdowns and COVID-19 restrictions in Shanghai, Zhejiang and Jiangsu pose a large challenge for Swiss companies. Close to all of the surveyed companies expect lower revenues and 86% think the yearly profit target will be impacted.

The full survey analysis can be viewed here. For questions and further information, contact Peter Bachmann, Executive Director of the Swiss Chinese Chamber of Commerce in Shanghai: p.bachmann@sha.swisscham.org or +86 21 5368 1270.

Survey: Swiss firms keep investing in China, challenges remain – October 27, 2021

Despite ongoing political and economic challenges in China, many Swiss companies believe that the country is and remains an attractive investment location.

The second largest economy in the world has seen better times. Problems just keep coming or don’t go away: Power shortages and blackouts that force companies to manufacture at night or just a few days per week, unprecedented uncertainty and financial defaults in the real estate market that impact businesses in construction and related industries, supply chain issues, geopolitical twists, new laws and regulations that needs to be explained if not justified, the list is long. As a result, economists say, we should not be surprised that China’s economy grew only 4.9% in the third quarter, which is well below expectation.

The world keeps pouring money into China’s economy

Despite all these problems, doubts and difficulties, China remains one of the most attractive investment locations in the world. As a matter of fact, last year, the Middle Kingdom recorded higher FDI inflows (USD 163 billion) than the United States (USD 134 billion). It was the first time in history that this happened. More recent figures show that money from our around the world continuous to flow into China’s economy. In the first nine months of this year, FDI has increased 19.6% year-on-year, to USD 134.7 billion.

Investment climate is considered good or very good

In a new survey by the Swiss Chinese Chamber of Commerce in Shanghai, 66% of the respondents indicate that the current investment climate in China is “good” or “very good / better than before COVID-19”. The main reason for investing is the “market size and opportunities” (88%), followed by the pressure of “existing clients to expand in the Chinese market to satisfy their demand” (24%). One could think this is in stark contrast to the problems mentioned above. But let’s not forget, China’s market is unique, it can’t be compared to any other country in so many ways.

Shanghai is the most favorable location

When asked which city, province or region is the best to spend the money, nearly 75% say Shanghai. 40% consider the Guangzhou / Shenzhen area as a good investment area, followed by Jiangsu province (37%) and Zhejiang province (29%). The South-west region with Chongqing and Chengdu (21%) and Anhui province (14%) are seen more favorable than the Shandong province (11%) or the north-eastern / Dongbei region (2%).

While 2/3 of the companies are present in China through a wholly foreign-owned enterprise (WFOE), 24% indicate that they (also) operate a joint venture in China. A good number of Swiss companies have several legal entities in the country, and often run a JV with a Chinese company and their own WFOE.

A lot of investment is planned for the next 12 months

The bulk of Swiss firms present in China are small and middle-sized companies. But this does not necessarily mean the Chinese market is not of great importance. In an earlier survey this year, over 54% of surveyed companies said they generate between 10% and 50% of their worldwide revenue in China. It is therefore not surprising that in this new survey, almost 30% say they invested RMB 100 million or more in China in the last five years. 10% say they spent more than RMB 1 billion.

Also not surprising is that many respondents are willing to keep spending money. 59% want to invest additional funds in the Chinese market in the next 12 months. Another 16% want to do so in the next 24 months. Within this time frame, 31% plan to spend between RMB 100 million and RMB 1 billion.

Risks, rising costs and travel restrictions cause problems

Obviously, companies do not only see opportunities, they also see the risks. “Unclear / changing regulations and laws” tops the list when asked which factors might jeopardize future investments. Other issues are increasing “labor costs” (51%) and “higher production costs for electricity, land, inputs and raw materials” (45%).

Close to 40% believe that the ongoing travel and visa restrictions will impact future engagements in the country. To be more specific about travel and visa restrictions, 44% say that they have a direct impact on investments and led to the postponement or cancelation of projects.

Chinese companies are competitive

When asked about the competitive environment, is it interesting to note that 68% of the respondents believe that their fiercest competitors are Chinese companies. 35% indicate that fellow European companies are the most to fear, followed by Japanese (31%) and American businesses (22%).

While the Chinese market is quite unique in terms of size and opportunities, we wanted to know which other country or region offers the greatest chance to ensure future growth. 53% say that the United States is the right place to invest, followed by India (43%), ASEAN countries (35%) and the European Union (29%).

A total of 63 companies have participated in the survey.

For questions about the survey, contact Peter Bachmann, Executive Director of the Swiss Chinese Chamber of Commerce in Shanghai: p.bachmann@sha.swisscham.org or +86 21 5368 1270.

HQ Survey: Swiss companies in China demand more decision power from their headquarters – AUGUST 10, 2021

A new survey by SwissCham Shanghai looked at the relationship between the senior management of Swiss companies in China and their headquarters in Switzerland. The study found that there is a lot of communication, but many executives in China believe they are not well understood and not given enough power to make decisions to act in accordance with market demand.

For a good number of the 73 Swiss companies that participated in this survey, the role of the Chinese market is significant. Over 54% indicate that revenue generated in China contributes between 10% and 50% to worldwide sales.

The full survey analysis can be viewed here. For questions and further information, contact Peter Bachmann, Executive Director of the Swiss Chinese Chamber of Commerce in Shanghai: p.bachmann@sha.swisscham.org or +86 21 5368 1270.

Business Survey: Reviewing 2020, Assessing 2021 – JANUARY 28, 2021

We are delighted to present the results of our “Business Survey: Reviewing 2020, Assessing 2021”. The result indicates that even though there is 36.59% of the respondent companies’ China sales is higher than budget, there is still 31.71% of the companies’ profitability is lower than budget. On the other hand, 41.46% of the respondent companies’ China sales is lower than budget. In 2021, 58.54% of the respondent companies’ expects higher sales and higher profits.

According to the results, the 3 greatest challenges the companies are facing at are “Travel restrictions”, “Find the right people / talent attraction”, followed by “Reach sales and profit goods & compete with domestic competitors”. In the last 12 months, 50% of the respondent companies reflects that their business environment changed positively, only 35.7% of the companies responds that their business environment changed negatively. There is also 14.3% of the companies think their business environment was challenging but still had opportunities.

The full survey analysis can be downloaded here. For questions and further information, contact Peter Bachmann, Executive Director of the Swiss Chinese Chamber of Commerce in Shanghai: p.bachmann@sha.swisscham.org or +86 21 5368 1270.

COVID-19 Business Survey Analysis

In a new survey launched by the Swiss Chinese Chamber of Commerce in China a majority of the 121 participating Swiss companies see light at the end of the COVID-19 tunnel. 52% expect regular operations latest by June 30. The survey also revealed that many businesses were able to solve major problems they faced in the earlier stage of the coronavirus outbreak, such as the lack of protective equipment, staff shortages and general HR issues.

However, challenges remain. 61% of the companies have difficulties coping with the restrictions traveling to China and traveling inside China. Other issues include reduced demand (67%), reduced revenue (60%) and reduced profits (48%). Almost 2/3 of the respondents expect a revenue slump of 20%-40% this year vs budget if the business can only get back to full operation by August. In terms of investments, there is a divide between the optimists (22.5%) who expect no change in this year and the pessimists / realists (30%) who think investments will decrease by 20% or more vs budget in 2020.

The survey was conducted in April and sent to Swiss companies operating in China. 58% of the participants are SMEs with less than 100 employees in mainland China. 44% of the companies are in industrial goods manufacturing and produce for the Chinese market or for export. The survey was support by the Embassy of Switzerland in Beijing, the Consulate General of Switzerland in Shanghai and the Swiss Business Hub.

The survey results have been presented during our webinar on Monday, April 27, 2020. To further discuss the topics, we invited a panel with Yves Reymond (Head of the Economic, Trade and Financial Section at the Embassy of Switzerland in Beijing), Alfonso Troisi (Business Executive Officer of Greater China at Nespresso and President of SwissCham Shanghai and Board Member of SwissCham China), Marco Bollier (Chief Commercial Officer at Geistlich Pharma China and Board member of SwissCham Beijing), Thilo Koeppe (Managing Director North Asia of Huber+Suhner) and Lily Shi (Managing Director of Hidrostal Pumps and Hidrostal M&E Engineering).

The full survey analysis can be downloaded here. For questions and further information, contact Peter Bachmann, Executive Director of the Swiss Chinese Chamber of Commerce in Shanghai: p.bachmann@sha.swisscham.org or +86 21 5368 1270.

Sino-Swiss FTA Survey

With the support of the Embassy of Switzerland in China, the Consulate General of Switzerland in Shanghai, the Swiss Business Hub, the Swiss Center Shanghai and the three different liaison offices of SwissCham China, a survey was set up to gain insights into how well the FTA works and gauge Swiss companies’ satisfaction with it in China. Close to a hundred participants from various sectors completed the FTA survey and shared their thoughts and experiences, as well as their ‘practical’ knowledge after one year and a half making use of the FTA.

Business Survey: Reviewing 2020, Assessing 2021

We are delighted to present the results of our “Business Survey: Reviewing 2020, Assessing 2021”. The result indicates that even though there is 36.59% of the respondent companies’ China sales is higher than budget, there is still 31.71% of the companies’ profitability is lower than budget. On the other hand, 41.46% of the respondent companies’ China sales is lower than budget. In 2021, 58.54% of the respondent companies’ expects higher sales and higher profits.

According to the results, the 3 greatest challenges the companies are facing at are “Travel restrictions”, “Find the right people / talent attraction”, followed by “Reach sales and profit goods & compete with domestic competitors”. In the last 12 months, 50% of the respondent companies reflects that their business environment changed positively, only 35.7% of the companies responds that their business environment changed negatively. There is also 14.3% of the companies think their business environment was challenging but still had opportunities.

The full survey analysis can be downloaded here. For questions and further information, contact Peter Bachmann, Executive Director of the Swiss Chinese Chamber of Commerce in Shanghai: p.bachmann@sha.swisscham.org or +86 21 5368 1270.

COVID-19 Business Survey Analysis

In a new survey launched by the Swiss Chinese Chamber of Commerce in China a majority of the 121 participating Swiss companies see light at the end of the COVID-19 tunnel. 52% expect regular operations latest by June 30. The survey also revealed that many businesses were able to solve major problems they faced in the earlier stage of the coronavirus outbreak, such as the lack of protective equipment, staff shortages and general HR issues.

However, challenges remain. 61% of the companies have difficulties coping with the restrictions traveling to China and traveling inside China. Other issues include reduced demand (67%), reduced revenue (60%) and reduced profits (48%). Almost 2/3 of the respondents expect a revenue slump of 20%-40% this year vs budget if the business can only get back to full operation by August. In terms of investments, there is a divide between the optimists (22.5%) who expect no change in this year and the pessimists / realists (30%) who think investments will decrease by 20% or more vs budget in 2020.

The survey was conducted in April and sent to Swiss companies operating in China. 58% of the participants are SMEs with less than 100 employees in mainland China. 44% of the companies are in industrial goods manufacturing and produce for the Chinese market or for export. The survey was support by the Embassy of Switzerland in Beijing, the Consulate General of Switzerland in Shanghai and the Swiss Business Hub.

The survey results have been presented during our webinar on Monday, April 27, 2020. To further discuss the topics, we invited a panel with Yves Reymond (Head of the Economic, Trade and Financial Section at the Embassy of Switzerland in Beijing), Alfonso Troisi (Business Executive Officer of Greater China at Nespresso and President of SwissCham Shanghai and Board Member of SwissCham China), Marco Bollier (Chief Commercial Officer at Geistlich Pharma China and Board member of SwissCham Beijing), Thilo Koeppe (Managing Director North Asia of Huber+Suhner) and Lily Shi (Managing Director of Hidrostal Pumps and Hidrostal M&E Engineering).

The full survey analysis can be downloaded here. For questions and further information, contact Peter Bachmann, Executive Director of the Swiss Chinese Chamber of Commerce in Shanghai: p.bachmann@sha.swisscham.org or +86 21 5368 1270.

Sino-Swiss FTA Survey

With the support of the Embassy of Switzerland in China, the Consulate General of Switzerland in Shanghai, the Swiss Business Hub, the Swiss Center Shanghai and the three different liaison offices of SwissCham China, a survey was set up to gain insights into how well the FTA works and gauge Swiss companies’ satisfaction with it in China. Close to a hundred participants from various sectors completed the FTA survey and shared their thoughts and experiences, as well as their ‘practical’ knowledge after one year and a half making use of the FTA.

Business Survey: Reviewing 2020, Assessing 2021

We are delighted to present the results of our “Business Survey: Reviewing 2020, Assessing 2021”. The result indicates that even though there is 36.59% of the respondent companies’ China sales is higher than budget, there is still 31.71% of the companies’ profitability is lower than budget. On the other hand, 41.46% of the respondent companies’ China sales is lower than budget. In 2021, 58.54% of the respondent companies’ expects higher sales and higher profits.

According to the results, the 3 greatest challenges the companies are facing at are “Travel restrictions”, “Find the right people / talent attraction”, followed by “Reach sales and profit goods & compete with domestic competitors”. In the last 12 months, 50% of the respondent companies reflects that their business environment changed positively, only 35.7% of the companies responds that their business environment changed negatively. There is also 14.3% of the companies think their business environment was challenging but still had opportunities.

The full survey analysis can be downloaded here. For questions and further information, contact Peter Bachmann, Executive Director of the Swiss Chinese Chamber of Commerce in Shanghai: p.bachmann@sha.swisscham.org or +86 21 5368 1270.

COVID-19 Business Survey Analysis

In a new survey launched by the Swiss Chinese Chamber of Commerce in China a majority of the 121 participating Swiss companies see light at the end of the COVID-19 tunnel. 52% expect regular operations latest by June 30. The survey also revealed that many businesses were able to solve major problems they faced in the earlier stage of the coronavirus outbreak, such as the lack of protective equipment, staff shortages and general HR issues.

However, challenges remain. 61% of the companies have difficulties coping with the restrictions traveling to China and traveling inside China. Other issues include reduced demand (67%), reduced revenue (60%) and reduced profits (48%). Almost 2/3 of the respondents expect a revenue slump of 20%-40% this year vs budget if the business can only get back to full operation by August. In terms of investments, there is a divide between the optimists (22.5%) who expect no change in this year and the pessimists / realists (30%) who think investments will decrease by 20% or more vs budget in 2020.

The survey was conducted in April and sent to Swiss companies operating in China. 58% of the participants are SMEs with less than 100 employees in mainland China. 44% of the companies are in industrial goods manufacturing and produce for the Chinese market or for export. The survey was support by the Embassy of Switzerland in Beijing, the Consulate General of Switzerland in Shanghai and the Swiss Business Hub.

The survey results have been presented during our webinar on Monday, April 27, 2020. To further discuss the topics, we invited a panel with Yves Reymond (Head of the Economic, Trade and Financial Section at the Embassy of Switzerland in Beijing), Alfonso Troisi (Business Executive Officer of Greater China at Nespresso and President of SwissCham Shanghai and Board Member of SwissCham China), Marco Bollier (Chief Commercial Officer at Geistlich Pharma China and Board member of SwissCham Beijing), Thilo Koeppe (Managing Director North Asia of Huber+Suhner) and Lily Shi (Managing Director of Hidrostal Pumps and Hidrostal M&E Engineering).

The full survey analysis can be downloaded here. For questions and further information, contact Peter Bachmann, Executive Director of the Swiss Chinese Chamber of Commerce in Shanghai: p.bachmann@sha.swisscham.org or +86 21 5368 1270.

Sino-Swiss FTA Survey

With the support of the Embassy of Switzerland in China, the Consulate General of Switzerland in Shanghai, the Swiss Business Hub, the Swiss Center Shanghai and the three different liaison offices of SwissCham China, a survey was set up to gain insights into how well the FTA works and gauge Swiss companies’ satisfaction with it in China. Close to a hundred participants from various sectors completed the FTA survey and shared their thoughts and experiences, as well as their ‘practical’ knowledge after one year and a half making use of the FTA.


Swiss Business in China Survey

In cooperation with the China Europe International Business School (CEIBS) , the Swiss Center Shanghai, China Integrated, the Embassy of Switzerland in Beijing, Swissnex China, Switzerland Global Enterprise, and SwissCham are pleased to bring you the findings of Swiss respondents who participated in the CEIBS Business in China Survey 2016. In analyzing these responses, we intend to draw conclusions that will be useful for Swiss companies and their activities in China.

It is the only survey that collects responses from both Chinese and foreign companies in China. For the Swiss business community, the survey offers a possibility to understand how similarly Swiss, European and American companies perceive their China environment. This survey allows comparisons among firms of different national origins, based on a sufficient number of replies for each origin. Furthermore, the Swiss Business in China Survey contains a rare analysis of international and Chinese SMEs.

Price for a hard copy: RMB 60 + delivery cost
If you are interested in hard copies, please feel free to contact Kuno Gschwend at kuno.gschwend@swisscenters.org.