According to André Loesekrug-Pietri, founder and chairman of “A Capital,” a private Chinese-European investment fund that coinvests with Chinese groups in small and medium sized European companies with growth potential in China, Portugal is a fantastic gateway to enter Europe for Chinese companies with strategic value.
This factor takes on greater importance at a time when the Chinese economy is slowing down to its lowest levels seen in the past twenty-five years (7%), and consequently “the strategic need for Chinese companies to invest abroad has never been so high,” says Loesekrug-Pietri. He goes on to add that “many investment funds have 99% of their assets in China,” whereas they should be spread out among various countries in order to keep them more secure.
He also believes that given the difficulty Chinese companies face in becoming well known and the fact they “do not make an effort to explain who they are or what their strategy is,” Portugal is an ideal partner, especially because of its ties to Portuguese speaking countries. For this reason he would not be surprised to see “Portuguese and Chinese companies cooperating in Africa,” seeing as “the Portuguese project a positive image and have local contacts, while the Chinese can provide financial backing.”
Earlier this year, Guo Guangchang, CEO and founder of the largest private Chinese congalmorate, FOSUN Group, stated that “Portugal is the best European country to invest in” and that “Chinese entrepreneurs were not merely interested in the financial sector.”
In fact, in recent years Portugal has ranked 4th in the list of countries receiving Chinese investment in Europe, behind the United Kingdom, Germany and France, attracting in excess of 10 billion euros. Also contributing to this success has been the Authorizations for Investment Residence (ARI) programme organized by the Portuguese government, which is one of the most popular and competitive residence authorization programmes for foreign investment in Europe, also known as Golden Visa, most of the applications coming from China (86%).
Moreover, China last year became the third largest foreign direct investor in the world and it is already the second largest economy in the world, behind the United States of America. While Asia grows, Chinese investors are looking for opportunities elsewhere, which should result in an investment of 1.25 billion dollars over the next decade, as stated by Chinese President Xi Jinping in Seattle, U.S.A..
In addition to the aforementioned advantages, Portugal, through the International Business Centre of Madeira (IBCM), offers a privileged tax regime approved by the European Commission until the end of 2027, offering one of the lowest corporate income tax rates in the European Union (5%), among other benefits.
To find out how to invest in Portugal through the IBCM, please see the following: