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People's Daily Online>>China Business

After the uprising

By Wu Gang (Global Times)

14:17, December 01, 2011

Local workers at a Chinese furniture factory. Photo: Wu Gang/GT

For many Chinese companies that have used Egypt as the base for their expansion in northern Africa and the Middle East, 2011 should have been a good year. But after the January uprising that ousted President Hosni Mubarak, business has become a lot more difficult.

TEDA, a Chinese company that specializes in building economic development zones, was preparing to sign a contract with the Egyptian government for a permit to get the land to develop the second phase of its Suez Economic Trade and Cooperation Zone. But the plans had to be put on hold after the authorities changed the conditions for land use.

Foreign direct investment (FDI) in the country has slumped amid all the political uncertainty. The total FDI is expected to reach a maximum of $3 billion for 2011, half that of last year.

But most Chinese companies intend to stay.

"The political and economic crisis may cause difficulties for some, but it can also be a time of opportunities for others," said Li Daixin, executive vice general manager of TEDA's Egypt branch.

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