CEO Jifan Gao Speaks at Sino-German Business Leaders' Forum Led by Wen Jiabao and Angela Merkel
On Aug 31 2012, Trina Solar Chairman and CEO Jifan Gao participated in the Sino-German Business Leaders' Forum, presided over by Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao and German Chancellor Angela Merkel in Tianjin. Jifan Gao spoke on behalf of the Chinese PV industry and called for closer communication and collaboration between the private sectors of the two nations in the solar industry, and to jointly undergo the current challenges in the spirit of free trade and fair competition.
In his speech, Jifan Gao noted the complementary and mutual beneficial cooperation of the two nations' in the PV industry in recent years. In Germany, solar energy now constitutes over 25% of its total grid, which has not only lifted up German upstream and downstream businesses, but also created a market for Chinese companies. In 2011 China exported more than 20 billion USD in solar products to the EU, with China's leading position in cell and module manufacturing, and European solar equipment occupied more than 50% of the total demand in China market, and shared this success with German raw material suppliers. This cooperation enabled the German solar FIT to be reduced from 0.64 Euro in 2004 to 0.16 Euro today, a great reduction of government spending and a great contribution to the fulfillment of German renewable energy targets. Meanwhile Chinese companies have also improved their sustainable development practices.
Jifan Gao proposed to strengthen the cooperation between the two nations in the solar sector. He suggested that the German government promote the successful cases of its multinational corporations in the Chinese market, and encourage German solar companies to further develop the Chinese and global solar markets through broad collaboration. In the same vein he suggested the German government attract Chinese investment by building closer trading and research relationships. Lastly, he proposed the two governments enhance their exchange and cooperation in the area of solar policy and technology to enhance mutual sustainable growth.
Leaders of the two nations paid special attention to the current PV trade issue. The second session of the Sino-German Government Dialogue sets a constructive model for the whole world in solving trade issues smartly. In the joint press conference after the second session, Wen Jiabao announced that China and Germany strive to resolve bilateral trade issues through negotiation and consultation, and at the same time expand their cooperation in R&D, manufacturing, and market development. Angela Merkel advised the EU Trade Commission and relevant companies to work together with their Chinese counterparts to solve the disputes by communication and resist the temptation to resort to protectionism. “We have touched upon such topics in high level meetings and believe that protectionism is not the solution. Communication works better. We all need free trade, and request a level playing field from both countries,” Merkel told the media.