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INSIGHTS / THE BIG PICTURE

China’s startups have much to gain from the US-China trade war

China · Mar 11, 2019 · By Wang Xiao'e

The prolonged trade conflict may be exactly what Chinese startups need to strengthen their technological capabilities

As speculation mounts that the US-China trade war could soon draw to a close, with the nations reaching a deal by the end of March, for China the conflict has also created unique opportunities. 

In the longer run, Chinese startups may actually gain from the tensions between the world’s two largest economies. 

Tariffs levied by the US were designed to strike a direct blow at Chinese enterprises selling the affected items, e.g., high-tech medical devices, biological medicine, new materials and industrial robots, abroad.

Yet for the Chinese startups with strong core technologies, any pain ensuing from the trade war seems to have been minimal. Shanghai-based exoskeleton robotics company Fourier Intelligence, for instance, remains confident that its products will sell. 

“We offer our robot for only one-third of its US counterparts’ cost. Despite the tariff increase, the price edge is still there,” said founder and CEO Gu Jie.

Edited by Wendy Lovinger (With additional editing by Bernice Tang)

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