Teaming up with multinational companies in engineering procurement construction (EPC) projects under the Belt and Road Initiative will help Chinese enterprises gain greater understanding and recognition in local markets, said an industry insider.
Sinopec Engineering (Group) Co Ltd, the Sinopec-owned oil-refining and chemical company specializing in EPC contracting business, said working with multinational companies will benefit Chinese firms as they venture into overseas markets.
"From my experience, in the petrochemical industry, the international market usually lacks sufficient understanding of Chinese products, so sometimes they don't accept Chinese equipment," Sun Songquan, vice-general manager of the sourcing department of SEG, said during a panel discussion on Tuesday at a Belt and Road Forum in Urumqi, the Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region.
"Their impression of 'made-in-China' remains at the early stage of China's opening-up when we produced low-quality and cheap goods."
In 2013, Kazakhstan Petrochemical Industry Inc Ltd selected SEG for the Atyrau EPC project of propane de-hydrogenation and polypropylene plants, which took over three years to complete. ABB was one of the partners SEG worked with.
"Through the Belt and Road Initiative, we can export more core technologies," he said. "For example, the contract we had with Kazakhstan involved purchasing equipment from China including compressors and pumps, which have won approval in the local market."
On the other hand, as the Belt and Road Initiative has brought profound opportunities for both contractors and also product and service providers, ABB wishes to get more involved in the initiative and help Chinese EPC companies go abroad based on its solutions, said Jiang Haibo, head of the industrial automation division of ABB China.
Li Xinyu, director-general at Chinese People's Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries, said Chinese EPC contractors need to focus on quality and efficiency as the initiative has provided tremendous opportunities to all involved.