The America Chamber of Commerce in China (AmCham) Business Climate Survey showed that most American companies in the country were profitable in 2018, although the percentage declined slightly from 73 percent to 69 percent. Thanks to the improved investment environment and intellectual property protection, most companies see their revenues growing in 2019.
AmCham members still see China among the top three global priorities for investment. Tim Stratford, Chairman of AmCham said the results are in line with what they expected. China is a huge market that continues to grow, he said, adding if companies take a long term view, most of them should realize that they need to have a China strategy and be involved in the Chinese market.
A total of 65 percent of companies surveyed said trade tensions influence their longer-term business strategies, and nearly a quarter are delaying additional China investments.
“I think number one, we don’t know what’s going to be in agreement, and number two we don’t know how smooth implementation of any additional market openings might be. And so I think companies are going to take a kind of a wait and see attitude for some time. They will be participating and growing in China as much as they can, but they’ll be hesitant about some big investments,” Stratford said.
Stratford told CGTN that AmCham is optimistic there will be an agreement between China and the U.S. Both sides are engaged in such a serious way, he said, adding that the frequency of the discussions is a good sign.
In addition, market access restrictions continue to pose significant challenges for its members. However, half of the members are optimistic that steps will be taken to further open markets for foreign companies in China.