Business & Economy

China committed to opening up its economy, FM tells Musk

(Update 1: Changes headline, reledes, adds detail throughout)

Beijing, May 30 (EFE).- China will create a “better market-oriented” business environment and is committed to a “high-level” opening up of its economy, Chinese Foreign Minister, Qin Gang told Tesla CEO Elon Musk in Beijing on Tuesday.

It is Musk’s first visit to China since 2020.

The trip comes at a time when Tesla has seen competition with Chinese automakers increase.

China’s modernization “will create unprecedented growth potential and market demand,” Qin was quoted as saying by the Chinese Foreign Ministry during a meeting with the Tesla chief.

“China’s new energy automobile industry has broad prospects for development,” Qin added.

“China will continue to unswervingly promote high-level opening up, and is committed to creating a better market-oriented, legalized and internationalized business environment for companies from all over the world, including Tesla,” the statement added.

Qin said that “healthy, stable and constructive” China-US relations were not only beneficial to both countries “but also beneficial to the world.”

“Using Tesla as an analogy, to develop Sino-US relations well, we need to keep the steering wheel in the right direction of mutual respect, peaceful coexistence, and win-win cooperation,” Qin said.

The Chinese Foreign Ministry quoted Musk as saying that “the interests of the United States and China are intertwined, like Siamese twins, who are inseparable from each other.”

Tesla opposes “decoupling and breaking chains” and is willing to continue to expand its business in China and share development opportunities, the statement quoted the billionaire as saying.

In 2019, Tesla opened its first “gigafactory” outside the US in Shanghai, a plant from which more than 710,000 vehicles were made in 2022, which state newspaper Global Times said represents just over half its global sales.

In April, the brand announced it would open a new factory in the eastern Chinese city to produce its “Megapacks,” energy storage batteries used to stabilize power grids and prevent blackouts.

This new Tesla plant will have a production capacity of about 10,000 units of the aforementioned product each year, the company said.

Since 2019, the US firm has increased its investment in the Lingang free trade zone, where its Shanghai operations are located, expanding the production of its “gigafactory” and building additional facilities such as a production plant for its electric vehicle “superchargers.”

It is expected that, with the opening of the new Tesla factory, the value of the industrial hub will exceed RMB 100 billion yuan ($14.54 billion), according to Chinese news agency Xinhua. EFE


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