Supplying China’s growing demand for clean energy technology and celebrating British Columbia’s strong cultural ties with China will be the major highlights of Premier Christy Clark’s third trade mission to China, which she embarks on today.
Premier Clark, along with International Trade Minister Teresa Wat, will be leading a delegation of approximately 200 business and community members, making this one of the largest trade mission delegations in B.C. history. Participation has been driven by the growing opportunities in China and the celebration of the 20th anniversary of sister-province relations between B.C. and Guangdong.
“This trade mission is about acknowledging our strong historical and cultural ties with China, while looking to what the future holds as China shifts to a low carbon economy,” said Premier Clark. “We have the knowledge, expertise and resources to help China transition toward cleaner energy solutions. This trade mission is a great way to show Chinese business and government representatives what we can offer, stimulating clean technology and energy export opportunities for B.C. businesses.”
B.C. clean tech companies such as Ballard Power Systems, which is a member of the trade mission’s business delegation, have begun making significant inroads in China. Ballard has recently announced two deals to provide 10 fuel cell engines and enough fuel cells to support approximately 300 buses for the City of Foshan’s urban transit system. Foshan Vice-Mayor Xu Guo said in a statement the $6-million deal will help the city of 7.2 million people transition to clean mass-transit technology.
As part of its transition to new energy sources, China wants to double the usage of natural gas by 2020, and B.C. is prepared to meet that demand. Chilliwack-based IMW Industries, the world’s largest manufacturer of non-lubricated natural gas compressors and related technologies, is already capitalizing on the opportunities when it signed a one billion RMB (US $167 million) equipment purchase agreement with China Gas in 2013 to supply up to 416 natural gas compressors and related technologies for the construction of up to 310 natural gas stations in China over three years.
In recognition of the 20th anniversary celebration in Guangdong, British Columbia has proclaimed Nov. 1-7, 2015, as British Columbia-Guangdong Sister Province Week.
Trade missions are a critical part of British Columbia’s BC Jobs plan strategy to diversify international trading partners and secure new investment, and help propel economic activity and job creation throughout the province.
- B.C.’s clean tech industry consists of more than 200 companies employing approximately 6,400 people and generates $1.7 billion in revenue.
- The global market for clean technology and services is expected to grow to $3 trillion by 2020.
- B.C. was the first jurisdiction in North America to introduce a broad-based, revenue-neutral carbon tax and to have a carbon-neutral public sector.
- British Columbia has expanded its trade and investment network in China and Hong Kong, with trade and investment representatives located in Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Hong Kong.
- In September 2014, Guangdong Governor Zhu Xiaodan and Premier Christy Clark signed an Action Plan to mark the 20th anniversary of sister-province relations between B.C. and Guangdong.
- B.C. opened a trade and investment office in Guangzhou in February 2009 that is currently staffed by six trade and investment representatives.
- In September 2014, Guangdong chose Vancouver as the home of its first trade office in Canada.
- The B.C. government provided $200,000 in partial funding for the “Gold Rush! El Dorado in British Columbia” exhibition at the Royal BC Museum. $100,000 of the funding is part of the $1 million allocated to the Chinese Historical Wrongs Legacy Projects and the other $100,000 is from the Ministry of International Trade.
For more details on Premier Clark’s trade mission to China, visit: https://news.gov.bc.ca/stories/trade-mission-to-china
Ballard Signs $3M Contract for Development of Fuel Cell Module to Power Trams in China During BC Trade Mission: news release (ballard.com)
For more information about B.C. trade and investment opportunities, visit: http://www.britishcolumbia.ca/
Learn more about the BC Jobs Plan at: http://engage.gov.bc.ca/bcjobsplan/
British Columbia-Guangdong Sister Province week proclamation: http://linkTBC