Birds fly over the water in the eastern coastal city of Yantai, East China's Shandong province. [Photo/dzwww.com]
More Fortune Global 500 companies are eyeing East China's Shandong as an ideal place for investment as the province has been optimizing its business environment and further opening up its economy.
Henkel Loctite set up its branch in Yantai city in 1987, becoming the first Fortune Global 500 company to do so in Shandong since the late 1970s. The German company has witnessed Shandong's economic take-off ever since.
Yang Hua, general manager of Henkel Loctite China, said the company's annual production has grown from less than 100 tons to more than 5,000 tons and its investment in Yantai has grown into $32 million from the initial $920,000.
The Yantai branch has become the only production base of Henkel Loctite in the Asia-Pacific region, producing more than 2,000 kinds of products, said Yang.
In a thank-you note sent to the Yantai Economic and Technological Development Area earlier this year during the COVID-19 outbreak in China, Jeremy Hunter, president of Henkel Greater China, said, "Henkel firmly believes that the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak will be temporary, that the Chinese economy has great resilience and potential, and that the long-term positive trend will not change."
He said, "Henkel will continue to explore the Chinese market and fully support high-quality development to create sustainable growth. No matter what difficulties and challenges we may encounter, we will continue to stand firmly with China and the city of Yantai to fight the epidemic."
Air Liquide, a French multinational company that provides gases, technologies and services for industry and health, has opened a number of plants in Qingdao since it set up its first plant in the city in 1995.
In 2005, it acquired a local gas company and invested $28.8 million to build liquid air separation units, which provide high-quality nitrogen to surrounding chemical enterprises through pipelines.
Air Liquide also has engaged in atmospheric controlling, drinking water deep treatment and other areas with local enterprises in Qingdao.
As of the first half of this year, a total of 219 Fortune 500 companies have invested in 785 companies in Shandong, demonstrating the province is an attractive destination for companies due to its strong business environment and economic prospects, Shandong officials said.