Chinese companies score big at World Cup

Companies present a wide range of products at the Qatar tournament

Despite failing to qualify for the ongoing FIFA World Cup final in Qatar, China is making a huge contribution to the world’s biggest sporting event.

Chinese products, infrastructure projects and sponsors have won praise from grateful fans and potential customers.

In recent months, Luo Yang, sales manager of the overseas business unit of Higer Bus Co, a bus and truck manufacturer based in Suzhou, Jiangsu Province, has been keeping a close eye on the 1,815 buses that the company delivered to Qatar last year.

These vehicles provide shuttle services for the thousands of fans, officials and journalists from different countries during the tournament, which runs from November 20 to December 18.

“After the World Cup, buses will be used to take children to school,” Luo said, adding that child monitoring systems installed in vehicles trigger an alert when a bus arrives at its destination. The driver moves around the vehicle to make sure the children leave safely, before pressing a button to deactivate the alert.

Higer’s rival, Zhengzhou Yutong Group Co, a commercial vehicle maker in Zhengzhou, Henan Province, exported more than 1,500 buses to Qatar for the World Cup, including 888 electric ones. It is the first time that new energy buses from China have been used at a major global sporting event.

A range of Chinese items are available at the tournament, including keychains, horns, flags, clothing and footwear from Yiwu, Zhejiang and Jinjiang, Fujian Province, as well as fireworks from Liuyang, Hunan province.

Market watchers said the abundance of these products is due to China’s industrial upgrading boom, well-developed supply chains and green processing.

China International Marine Containers (Group), based in Shenzhen, Guangdong province, was responsible for building the 974 stadium in Qatar, which was assembled from 974 containers and can be easily dismantled.

Air conditioners for 100 security control centers at tournament venues were supplied by China’s Midea Group, and stadium communication facilities and joint command and control center network equipment were made in China.

Zhao Xinli, dean of the institute of advertising at the Communication University of China in Beijing, said that if the elements provided by China for the Qatar event were contesting a “World Cup of global manufacturing”, then ” Team China” would surely be a popular winner.

Xiao Shuhong, professor of sports economics at Beijing Sports University, said China’s contribution to the World Cup reflects the growing importance of the Chinese market to the global economy. Held every four years, the tournament will significantly boost the growth of the global sports economy by creating business opportunities for export companies in China and other parts of the world, Xiao added.

Boosted by their complementary trade structure and the World Cup, the total trade value between China and Qatar rose 64.7 percent year-on-year to $21.66 billion between January and October, according to the administration. General of China Customs.

At Lusail Stadium, north of Qatar’s capital Doha, Unilumin Group, a high-definition screen maker headquartered in Shenzhen, installed two 70-square-meter light-emitting diode, or LED, screens displaying the score during matches. matches. The 190m² stadium, which has a capacity of 80,000, is due to host the tournament final on December 18.

Yang Jun, president for the Qatar market at Unilumin Group’s international sales center, said that since the Gulf nation has high temperatures and strong sunlight, the LED screens used for the World Cup disperse heat better. They also have a higher brightness level than other screens, Yang added.

“The Qatar World Cup is a microcosm of Chinese brands going global,” he said, adding that the company was ready to receive more orders for the Asian Cup soccer tournament, which will be held in Qatar next year.

Similar views were expressed by Zhang Feng, vice president of Avant Sports Industrial Co, another Shenzhen-based manufacturer of sports equipment and facilities, which has supplied tens of thousands of movable and retractable seats for the eight World Cup venues in Qatar.

Zhang said that by aiming to play a dynamic role in smart production, China’s manufacturing sector is leveraging greener and digital technologies to further compete with global rivals.

“As Qatar is still relatively warm at this time of year, we have used a new type of cooling material for the seats, which can reduce the seat surface temperature by 9 to 17 degrees. These seats should have a lifespan of more than a decade,” Zhang added.

Sponsors are welcome

Even without the presence of the Chinese team at the tournament, the Chinese sponsors are enthusiastic about the Qatar World Cup and they have been warmly welcomed by the host country.

According to GlobalData, a London-based data analytics and consulting firm, 20 Chinese companies provided more sponsorship for the 2022 World Cup than their rivals from other countries. These companies rank first in the world with spending of nearly $1.4 billion, surpassing the $1.1 billion spending of US companies.

The Chinese companies are led by four official FIFA sponsors – commercial property developer Wanda Group, home appliance maker Hisense Group, smartphone producer Vivo and dairy brand Mengniu.

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