"Exporting to China is complex, from a legal point of view, and all companies in the Azores, from this moment onwards, find in the Portugal-China SME chamber the necessary interlocutor to facilitate the entire administrative and bureaucratic process with the entities Chinese,” said the president of the CCAH, Marcos Couto.
The protocol identifies the agri-food sector and tourism as areas of possible collaboration between entrepreneurs from the Azores and China.
According to Marcos Couto, there is the possibility of attracting Chinese investment to “leverage some companies” in the Azores, but also to export products such as “milk, powdered milk, cheese and butter, eventually”.
“There are market niches where our products can enter. We will never have the capacity for large scale, but we will have capacity within market niches and that is what we are going to work on”, he pointed out.
For the president of the business association, transport will not be a constraint, but “there are bureaucratic issues that have to be overcome, from the point of view of the registration of Azorean companies with the Chinese Government to allow exports”.
“The support of the Portugal-China Chamber of Commerce can be essential in overcoming this bureaucratic and administrative issue”, he stressed.
Marcos Couto also said that the Chamber of Commerce of Angra do Heroísmo will try to "extend" this agreement to the Regional Government of the Azores.
The president of the Chamber of Commerce of Small and Medium Enterprises of Portugal-China, Y Ping Chow, admitted that doing business with China “is not easy”, claiming that Azorean entrepreneurs have to “study better and see the supply capacity ”, “see prices and transport”.
"As long as there are companies with capacity, with a good price, with a good article and that are of interest to Chinese consumers, we have 18 points that can serve the Azores," he said, claiming that the CCPC-PME has representation in 18 provinces and Chinese cities.
Y Ping Chow considered that tourism “can be an interesting activity”, not to attract Chinese tourists to the Azores, but investors “looking for business opportunities”.
“There is the possibility of bringing some businessmen here, mainly from the milk and cheese sectors or even from tourism and the economy of the sea”, he pointed out.
The Portugal-China chamber of commerce is “trying to create a development fund to invest in agri-food and tourism”, which could reach 30 million euros.
“There is a possibility of creating good projects and I am sure that we have the capacity to bring some companies to invest in certain sectors in the Azores”, said the president of the business association.