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Brexit: Opportunities for both the UK and China脱欧与中英两国的机遇

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With the year 2018 drawing to an end, it has proved to be a year with no lack of hot topics: 40thanniversary of China’s open and reform policy, China and US trade issues, and the UK’s negotiation progress with the EU: it has been two and a half years since the Brexit referendum in 2016, and the United Kingdom will leave the EU by 29thMarch 2019, just four months to go.

回首即将结束的2018年,我们发现她满满都是热点话题:中国改革开放40周年、中美贸易新形势、英国脱欧谈判等等。说到脱欧,自2016年的英国脱欧公投至今已近两年半的时间,距离明年329日英国正式脱欧只有短短4个月了。

At the same time, the United Kingdom is one of the most popular destinations for Chinese investors, and, President Xi Jinping’s visit to the UK in 2015 initiated a “golden era” for the two countries.

而与此同时,我们可以看到英国一直是最受中国投资者欢迎的投资目的地之一。2015年习主席的访英更是开启了中英两国的“黄金时代”。

Will the Brexit be an opportunity for both the United Kingdom of China, as well as other countries?

那么,对于中英两国乃至其他国家来说,英国脱欧是不是一个机会呢?

At the last QIBA night of the year 2018, we invited Mr. Maciej Poprawski, General Manager of Expo Technologies, to share with us his perspective. He has been working in China for three years after being commissioned from its headquarters in England to establish and manage the daughter company in Qingdao. The period of last three years was precisely the period of Brexit Referendum and Brexit negotiations.

本月28日,星期三,本年度最后一次QIBA活动,我们邀请了英国Expo Technologies青岛公司总经理马吉保先生(Mr. Maciej Poprawski),以他与中国多年的业务往来,从商务视角来分享他的观点:在过去三年中,Maciej被英国的总公司派来中国组建并运营在青岛的子公司,而这三年恰恰是英国脱欧公投和随之而来的脱欧谈判的过程。

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The last 15 years of Maciej’s journey is a very inspirational one.

Maciej过去15年的经历可以说是非常励志的了。

With an MSc degree in Automatics and Robotics in his homeland Poland, Maciej went to the United Kingdom as an engineer in Expo Technologies, an explosion protection company. In a time of more than one decade, he had worked all the way up to be the R&D head before being sent to Qingdao Jimo to establish a daughter company as its General Manager. Huge task? Absolutely. Full of challenges? Of course, especially in a completely different environment, culturally and physically. However, Maciej successfully founded the Jimo factory and brought it on the right track. In addition to this, he also managed to squeeze some time from his extremely busy work schedule to have obtained an MBA degree from the University of Maryland.

在祖国波兰获得了自动化与机器人专业的硕士学位以后,Maciej来到了英国,在以防爆装置专业公司Expo Technologies做工程师。十几年来,他兢兢业业一路拼搏过来,成为公司的研发负责人,随后被派来中国,在青岛组建并运营Expo Technologies中国子公司。这可是一个巨大的挑战,更何况是在一个文化与思维方式完全不同的国度。但是,Maciej依然成功在即墨建厂并使得公司的运营进入正轨,而在这繁忙的工作之余,Maciej甚至挤出时间继续学习并获得了美国马里兰大学的MBA学位。

To discuss this topic from an “observer’s” approach, he is the perfect person to do so. “Just after a few months of Poland becoming an EU member, I went to the United Kingdom and became a British citizen later. Then, after ten years, just a few months before the Brexit referendum, I relocated to Qingdao to set up our China factory!”

从一个“观察者”的角度来讨论这个话题,Maciej的确是一个绝佳人选。“当初波兰刚刚加入欧盟后几个月,我先是来到了英国,后来成为英国公民。十多年后,英国脱欧公投前几个星期我又被公司派来青岛建厂!”

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Brexit is—perhaps not the greatest metaphor - a divorce with the EU. After full divorce, the UK will not be restricted by the EU regulations (ex-husband’s regulations!) thus will have more freedom to develop relationship with other partners, for example, China.” Maciej explained with figures: “If you look at the UK’s import from the world, you can see that China amounts to 45.2 billion pounds and together with Germany, USA, and Netherlands is in the top four contributors to British imports, to many people’s surprise, with telecom equipment at the top of the list.

“如果我们把脱欧比作离婚当然可能这不是个最恰当的比喻,那么离婚后的英国就不必再受制于欧盟(前夫!)的一些约束而可以自由地跟其他伙伴,比如中国,发展关系。”Maciej列举了一组数字:“如果看一下英国从其他国家的进口数据,你会发现中国紧随美国和德国之后位列第三名,贸易额为452亿英镑而且,让很多人意外的是位于产品类别榜首的是电讯设备。

At the façade of export from the UK to the world, China is our 6thlargest market, amounting to 22.3 billion pounds. In other words, UK has a trade deficit with China and this is likely to remain intact. But, to many people’s surprise again, trade deficit doesn’t necessarily mean a bad thing. It is an oversimplification to say, without seeing a bigger picture, that any trade deficit is always harmful. In today’s globally interlinked economy, it is much more complicated to assess.

而在英国向其他国家出口方面,中国是英国第六大出口市场,交易额为223亿英镑。换句话说,英国对中国贸易存在逆差,而这个逆差可以预见是会持续存在的,但是贸易逆差并不见得就一定是坏事:当然如果没有一个更大的视野,你会觉得贸易逆差总是不利的,而这往往是过于简单化了。在今天这样一个相互依存的世界经济格局下,去评估贸易逆差是非常复杂的一件事情。

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Brexit means more opportunities for the UK. However, you can also argue it is a threat at the same time, as the UK can become more isolated on the European and global arenas.

脱欧意味着英国会有有更多的机会存在。当然你也可以说,脱欧同时也是一个不利的事情,因为脱欧之后的英国会在欧洲和世界舞台上变得更加孤立。

The United Kingdom is also extremely strong in the financial sector, and this is also particularly attractive to Chinese investors: China has big stakes in HSBC and the Heathrow airport, for instance. And don’t forget London is also a major offshore Yuanexchange centre.”

英国在金融服务行业也非常强大,而这也是对中国投资者极具吸引力的:比如中国投资者在汇丰银行和希斯罗机场都有很大股份,而且不要忘了伦敦也是人民币的一个主要离岸交易中心。

“However,” Maciej paused with a broad grin, “trade deficit has been upsetting some people. And the on-going US-China trade issue is adding more complication onto the already complicated Brexit situation. Please be also aware that I am only giving my subjective opinions, as nobody is able to give a clear answer to the situation at this stage.”

“不过,”Maciej笑着停顿了一下,“贸易逆差的确也让一些人不开心,而目前持续进行中的中美贸易争端也让脱欧这一本身就很复杂的事情变得更加复杂。请大家理解,我只是表达个人的一些主观看法。说实话,就目前而言也真的没有人能够就这个事情给出清晰的答案。

“Well, if you say that, after a certain period of time, everything will be settled down and back to normal,” questioned by the audience during the Q&A session, Maciej commented: “Yes of course, surely it will, but the question is how long it will take and how big the pain and cost will be.”

在互动环节中,也有听众提出了自己的观点。“当然,你也可以说,当时过境迁,所有的事情都终将尘埃落定,然后一切回归常态。的确如此。但是关键问题在于,这将持续多久,而这里面的痛有多深,代价有多大。

You can contact Maciej on maciejpoprawski@yahoo.com

想跟Maciej联系?他的Emailmaciejpoprawski@yahoo.com





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