News & Insights How can China fulfil its great expectations?

How can China fulfil its great expectations?
From an ambitious plan to become the global leader in hi-tech manufacturing by the middle of the century to an expected doubling of middle-class spending power to US$14.5 trillion by 2030, China is without doubt a country of great expectations. However, the nation grapples with tougher trading conditions, slower GDP growth and a reform of its economic model. The question is how will China navigate the coming years so that the country can fulfil its potential?

Now in its tenth year, the Credit Suisse China Investment Conference (CIC) presents an impressive line-up of C-suite executives, prominent industry experts and academic figures who will share unique insights on the theme of ‘Great Expectations’. Taking place from November 6-8 in Shenzhen, China, this year’s CIC will bring together business leaders and entrepreneurs from around the region to explore how investors can seize future opportunities in China as the country continues to progress amidst a challenging, yet dynamic macro backdrop.

Where next for US-China trade? 

US-China trade relations have been in the global spotlight for more than a year, and while talks between the two countries are continuing, the cycle of tariff and counter-tariff has not been concluded. To counter the trade sentiment, the financial markets are expecting Beijing to introduce broad-based measures to stimulate growth. At the CIC, former Chairman of the China Banking Regulatory Commission, Mingkang Liu, will guide us through his outlook on the prospects for China’s economic growth.

Meanwhile, Lawrence H. Summers, Former US Secretary of the Treasury in the Clinton Administration, will share his perspective on the possible ripple effects of the current discussions on global trade and macroeconomic outlook,  as well as consequences for geopolitical stability. 

Recent signs of a global economic slowdown and increasing geopolitical tension have led to broader discussions among governments about global trade and whether the system is balanced. In another macroeconomic session, Yongtu Long, China’s Former Vice Minister of Foreign Trade and Economic Cooperation, will share insights with the CIC audience on the adjustments China needs to consider making to its trade policy and what it can learn from history.

US imports from China and other countries

US imports from China and other countries

Source: Credit Suisse, China Market Strategy – Positioned for infrastructure rebound, 14 September 2019

Trailblazing technology

While the macroeconomic environment remains somewhat volatile, China’s great expectations are perhaps most evident in the area of technology. Take the example of robotics. China is the world’s largest market for industrial robots and the Greater Bay Area is emerging as a center of robotics innovation and manufacturing. Eden Lu, Founder of Roborn Dynamics, will be on hand at the CIC to discuss how robotic technology can be effectively integrated into the human ecosystem and the commercial opportunities for humanoid robots. 

Another area where technology is blazing a trail is in education, a topic that Julius Luo of TAL Education Group knows all about. The CFO of China’s leading online education company will present at the CIC, too, and will discuss how the company is embracing 5G and artificial intelligence to deliver education services and where the sector is heading next. 

China’s growing education market is also attracting globally-recognised foreign institutions with the number of private bilingual schools estimated to surge from 367 in 2017 to over 600 in 2020. CIC speaker Chris DeMarino, Managing Director and Founder at Academus Partners, will examine this evolving industry in a panel discussion. 

Private K12 schools' student enrolment is expected to rise with a higher penetration rate to meet strong demand

Source: Frost & Sullivan, Credit Suisse estimates

Electric vehicles and healthcare enter a new era

China is also harnessing technology to tackle problems like carbon emissions. By some margin, China is home to the world’s largest market for electric cars. However, with the government reducing the subsidies that have helped to deliver a rapid rise in sales, a new question is puzzling the industry: how can it remain competitive? Alex Xie, Managing Director and Partner at the Boston Consulting Group, will steer the CIC audience through the outlook for China’s new energy vehicle market.   

On a separate note, Beijing is making great strides in tackling some of the nation’s biggest social challenges. For instance, 2019 marks the 10-year anniversary of the launch of China’s landmark healthcare reforms that sought to provide accessible and affordable healthcare to the whole population. Dr. Bin Jiang, Associate Professor, Department of Pharmacy Administration and Clinical Pharmacy at Peking University’s School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, will join the CIC to reflect on the success of those changes and discuss where next for the healthcare reform agenda.

Meet the game changers

Not that this year’s CIC is all work and no play. Sports have always had the power to entertain and unite people across borders, but in the past, it has been difficult for athletes from China and the wider Asia region to break through to a global audience. Hua Fung Teh, Group President at ONE Championship and a Taekwondo black-belt holder, will share his insights on how his company intends to change the future for professional sports in Asia. 

If you are not so much into sports, but rather enjoy a moment of relaxation with a cup of coffee or tea, you might be interested in one of our other sessions. Chinese consumers are increasingly purchasing their caffeine fix from home-grown chain Luckin Coffee which raised US$695 million from a US IPO earlier this year. Its Chairman, Charles Lu, will share how the company is serving up an enhanced customer experience with its technology-driven retail model.

We very much look forward to welcoming you at this year’s China Investment Conference in Shenzhen and discussing how China can fulfil its great expectations. If you have any questions in advance, please contact your Credit Suisse representative.