Q: As we know, both Limburg and Guangdong have focused on technological innovation and industrial upgrading, what do you think Guangdong and Limburg could learn from each other?
A: Innovation is a process for which how you make sure that your input and innovation can help the company going to success. That’s a lot to do with process such as how you handle that, what are the innovation steps and so on.
Bike Valley, an innovative infrastructures in Limburg (Photo provided by Limburg Government)
My feeling is that Chinese companies should think a lot on how it should be done if the cost of labor rose. Maybe it is not very important today for you. But every year, salaries of people increased, definitely in China if you look at the absolute number. The labor is also an increasingly important factor for competition so finding the right people is also a challenge in China tomorrow as it has already happened in our country so we could learn a lot from each other about that.
On the other side, from innovation in Guangdong, I was mostly impressed by what we saw in these days. A lot of companies here have established relationship already with lots of western companies. We saw a lot of innovative DNA in the companies and organizations here. You have a vision to be the NO.1 and look into other large markets where the technology happens around like Silicon Valley. However, if you want to copy that model, it may not work because your situations are still a little bit different. Where we could help you is that how is innovation being handled in Europe. It’s slightly different but it’s very important. The big thing I want to say is don’t just copy the innovation mode in the United States and address it to the European market because it may not work as effective as it should be. We have countries speaking 19 languages. The culture and the law of the countries in EU are all different. Belgium in particular, for a large percentage of the innovations that happen in Europe, they originate from Belgium. That means if you succeed in Belgium, you could possibly succeed in the rest of the Europe.
Q: Both Guangdong and Limburg have a developed logistics industry. What could Guangdong and Limburg learn from each other?
A: During this visit, we have visited multiple logistic players in Guangdong. Some of them I would call Tier-1 players in that field who have developed advanced technology by their own hands. They make the logistic chain much better. What could we learn is that it made us to think how about one day they can work with us.
And one thing I think very important is that because the logistical chain in our province is a very nice collaboration between air, roads and water, we could teach each other how actually we have done. Definitely we have a lot of players in this space so if your companies want to set up its logistic chain in Europe, we can offer logistical services.