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Interview: Chinese auto makers will become important competitors: German association chief


FRANKFURT, (Xinhua) -- The president of the German Association of the Automotive Industry (VDA) said on Monday that he expects the Chinese auto makers to become very important competitors in the world in a few years.

In an interview with Xinhua following a news conference about the upcoming International Auto Show in Frankfurt, VDA president Matthis Wissmann offered his understanding about the strategy adopted by Chinese auto makers.

According to Wissmann, the Chinese auto makers are pursuing a three-step strategy. "The Chinese manufacturers know that first of all they have to do the utmost to be successful in their home market," he said.

The second step will involve efforts to become more successful in the so-called threshold countries in Asia, Latin America and Africa, according to Wissmann. "The most difficult markets are the most advanced markets, for example markets in the U.S. and the Europe," he said.

Wissmann remarked that the "brilliant strategic people" in China will make inroads into the U.S. and European auto markets once they become top producers and can compete at the same level as the competitors from Europe and other parts of the world.

Speaking at a news conference on the Auto Show, which will be open to journalists on Tuesday and last till Sept. 22, Wissmann noted that China has the greatest number of exhibitors at the Frankfurt Auto Show among all the foreign countries.

He spoke highly of the performance of German auto companies in China. "We are very proud of partnership with Chinese companies," Wissmann said and added that it's natural for Chinese suppliers and auto makers to learn to be present on the European market.

"We welcome you with all our hearts because we think such an important automotive nation as China will play a key role in the future in the world's auto market," he remarked.

Wissmann sees engineering capacity, entrepreneur spirit and hard-working people in the auto industry in China. "I have a high respect for what you are doing," he commented.

Wissmann toured the Shanghai Auto Show a few months ago. "It was a very impressive motor show," he said. According to Wissmann, the Frankfurt Auto Show is one of the most successful auto shows in which the presentation of complete vehicle producers and auto parts suppliers is combined.

The Auto Show in Frankfurt has attracted a total of 1098 exhibitors from 35 countries. There will be 159 world premieres, according to a press release provided by VDA.



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