January 13, 2015
Manama, Economic Development Board, 13 January 2015: A Chinese business delegation met with officials from the Economic Development Board (EDB) as part of a visit to the Kingdom. The delegation, including representatives from Chinese companies in the oil and gas sector, also held talks with their counterparts in the National Oil and Gas Authority (NOGA), Bapco as well as Tamkeen.
As part of the visit, the members were briefed on the Kingdom’s investment climate and competitive advantages through a presentation conducted by the EDB which introduced the benefits of setting up business in the Kingdom and the country’s diversified and free economy. The meeting also discussed the country’s positive international rankings, which are testament to the Kingdom’s policy in addressing economic changes with flexibility. It also showcased Bahrain uniqueness in providing national qualified workforce, and affordable and low cost living environment which contribute to the country being a gateway to the gulf market.
In October last year, a high-level business delegation from Bahrain conducted a 10 day visit to the People’s Republic of China, which aimed to strengthen economic and trade ties between the two countries. The visit included four of China’s main commercial centres; Beijing, Guangzhou, Shenzhen and Hong Kong and resulted in the signing of 13 agreements with various Chinese companies and trade entities. A delegation from NOGA have also visited China in December last year, where the members met with high level officials from the China National Energy Administration (NEA) as well as leading companies from the oil, gas and petrochemicals sector in the country.
The two nations earlier celebrated 25 years of bilateral relations last year, with the recent visit to China building on the successful visit by His Majesty King Hamad bin Isa Al-Khalifa to China in September 2013.
In 2011, total bilateral trade between Bahrain and China, excluding hydrocarbons, reached US$1.7billion. Machinery and mechanical equipment led Chinese imports to Bahrain in 2011 followed by minerals while hydrocarbons led Bahrain’s produce exported to China in the same year.
The EDB established an office in China in 2013 as part of its strategy to attract FDI into the Kingdom. The office is based at the Bahrain Embassy in Beijing, although it also operates in Hong Kong, and is headed by Mr. Yun Jiang.