The Silk Road once connected China to Europe and paved the way for valuable fabrics and spices. More than 2,000 years later, a new rendition of this ancient trade route is coming to life. With the ‘One Belt, One Road’ (OBOR) initiative, Chinese President Xi Jinping wants to create the world’s largest network for economic, political and cultural cooperation.
Thomas Wang, a member of the Funk Management Board responsible for business in China, says: ‘The new Silk Road is a project of gigantic proportions – both geographically and financially.’ With economic routes on land and sea, China is uniting several continents: Asia, Africa, Europe and the Americas. Beijing is looking to invest more than 900 billion euros in the project in the coming years and has already engaged 138 countries and 30 international organizations in the initiative, including Germany. In this role, China is becoming a driving force of global investment flows. Popular areas of investment for the Chinese are the high-tech sector, especially in manufacturing, as well as energy and utility companies. The Chinese are also investing more heavily in the fields of internet and communication technology, transport, infrastructure and entertainment.
An own division for Chinese clients
Corporate takeovers, infrastructure projects and the exchange of goods and services, however, are not without risks for Chinese investors. Thomas Wang: ‘The right protection in the form of a warranty and indemnity cover, for example, or a transport insurance policy, is incredibly important for Chinese companies in Germany.’ That’s why Funk has its own dedicated China Division that exclusively addresses the insurance needs of Chinese companies. In the German-speaking realm, this is truly unique. Funk is the market leader in insurance and risk management consultancy for Chinese companies with offices and subsidiaries in Germany. Yu Zhu, member of the China Division at Funk, explains: ‘The most crucial thing is to speak the language well and understand the Chinese mentality.’ Funk’s China Division has over 20 years of experience in this special field of consultancy and provides every kind of insurance solution for its clients – from extended products liability insurance and property insurance to private cover.