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February 23, 2020

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Foreign-funded firms getting back to normal

MOST foreign-funded enterprises in Shanghai are gradually resuming operations with the support of local authorities amid the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.

According to recent monitoring data of 697 key foreign-funded enterprises by the Shanghai Foreign Investment Association, over 90 percent of key service firms have resumed work, while the rate of key manufacturing companies resuming work is about 70 percent, and that of key pillar industries such as integrated circuits and biomedicine has reached over 80 percent, said Liu Min, deputy director of the Shanghai Commission of Commerce.

Liu also noted yesterday that Fortune Global 500 enterprises and headquarters in Shanghai have posted a high rate of work resumption.

Among the key enterprises monitored, nearly 90 percent of companies with investment from Fortune Global 500 enterprises have resumed work, so did 93 percent of the regional headquarters of transnational corporations and 87 percent of foreign-funded research and development centers in the city.

“We will also actively help foreign enterprises to make good use of the newly issued 28 measures to provide the best services for firms, so as to help them tide over difficulties and resume production and operation as soon as possible.”

Of note, the commission has organized translations of the 28 measures to enable foreign firms and investors to better understand the policy. The English and Japanese versions have been issued on the official website of the commerce commission as well as its official WeChat account.

Among the most popular measures is the policy of strengthening special financial and credit support for firms playing key roles in epidemic prevention. The commission has recommended more than 100 foreign-funded enterprises to relevant departments to help them get this support.

“In terms of the financing, we have helped connect foreign-funded enterprises with relevant departments, and have already fulfilled their financing needs of over 12.3 billion yuan (US$1.75 billion),” Liu stated.

In the next step, the commission, together with relevant departments and districts, will give guidance to foreign-funded enterprises in the prevention and control of the epidemic, and push them and their upstream and downstream supporting companies to resume work and production in an all-round way, she said.

Following the outbreak, foreign-funded enterprises have also taken the initiative against the epidemic, returning to work ahead of schedule to ensure the supply of key epidemic prevention materials and daily necessities, Liu revealed.

For instance, 3M, DuPont and Owen Halyard reached an agreement with the Shanghai Food and Strategic Reserves Administration on storage of epidemic prevention materials, seeking to establish a better emergency reserve mechanism.


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