Episode 23: European companies’ dilemma about localising R&D into China

European companies’ dilemma about localising R&D into China

The European Chamber, in partnership with the Mercator Institute for China Studies, (MERICS) launched the joint-report China’s Innovation Ecosystem: The localisation dilemma on 21st April. The report was the second of a planned three rounds of surveys and interviews among the Chamber’s members on European companies’ research and development (R&D) activities in China.

In this episode, our host Mariann Nagy, policy and communications manager at the European Chamber, is joined by Kris Van Gasse, vice chair of the European Chamber’s R&D working group, and Jacob Gunter, senior analyst at MERICS’ Economic Research Team. They look at some of the reports’ key findings, such as the different factors influencing European companies’ innovation in China, as well as the wide range of R&D strategies they deploy in the face of the complexity of China’s business environment.


Download the report China’s Innovation Ecosystem: The localisation dilemma:


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What to listen for:

01:30 What are the key findings in the second report on R&D that differ from the first report?

04:51 What are the factors influencing companies’ innovation strategies?

08:22 What was the impact of China’s ‘zero-COVID’ policy on R&D activities in China?

11:13 What is the on-the-ground perspective of the issues stemming from the pandemic controls that are undermining R&D activities in China?

13:19 How can geopolitical issues like the Russia’s invasion of Ukraine influence companies’ R&D planning in China?

16:17 Are there concrete steps that European companies are taking to mitigate geopolitical risks?

18:44 What are the different R&D-related government support schemes, and what benefits do they entail?

20:32 What does the report suggest about European companies’ actual access to government support and its impact on their R&D strategies?

24:15 What proportion of R&D results from China be commercialised in other markets?

26:45 Are there any discrepancies when exporting R&D results out of China?

28:50 What are the recommendations for companies currently considering doing R&D in China?

32:29 When is the next round of surveys going to be held and the final report being released?

33:32 What are some suggested key topics to explore in the next report?


We’d love to hear your feedback. Contact us at website@europeanchamber.com.cn.

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