Lithuania invites Chinese giant to tea

By bne IntelliNews June 28, 2016

Vilnius hopes China’s biggest tea grower, Yunnan Dianhong Group, will establish an office in the Baltic country to serve as the company’s European marketing centre, the Lithuanian prime minister told local media on June 28.

"China is increasingly interested in investment opportunities in Lithuania. Yunnan Dianhong Group also shows interest and we encourage the company to come to Lithuania," Prime Minister Algirdas Butkevicius told BNS. Countries across Central & Eastern Europe are pitching feverishly for investment from the Asian giant, which sees the region as a bridgehead to the wider EU.

The PM said the Chinese company plans to expand its business and representation in Europe, including setting up a marketing centre for Europe and a processing facility. However, claim that China is increasingly interest in investing in Lithuania appears optimistic. Direct investment in 2014-2015 peaked at just below €1mn by the end of the fourth quarter of 2014, where it has broadly hovered since.

Still, Beijing is always happy to suggest to CEE states that waves of cash are on the way, but is well practiced at playing hard ball before reaching any final agreement. Yet a massive investment war chest has countries throughout the region scrambling to win Chinese favour.


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