A Dutch entrepreneur said he felt “safe” and “protected” while working in Qianhai and expected more expat entrepreneurs to start their careers in the area and “thrive together.”
At an interview with Shenzhen Daily on Thursday, Henk Werner, CEO of Trouble Maker, which has built a platform and offered working spaces for expat entrepreneurs, said the business environment in Qianhai has been improving over the past years as the Qianhai Cooperation Zone People’s Court was set up and strict rules and regulations have been rolled out to protect inventors’ intellectual property rights (IPR).
“They [the Qianhai authorities] are creating an environment which is fair for international companies to do businesses there. The very first thing that I noticed about Qianhai is the establishment of an international court [the Qianhai court]. [As a foreign entrepreneur] you feel safer and are protected,” Werner said.
He said the court’s legal professionals can speak English and has adopted some Hong Kong law practices (such as Hong Kong, Macao, Taiwan and foreign law ascertainment services), and added that “you have the tools at your hand to make sure that you can have a stable business here.”
He notes that “There is also an improvement of the law in the sense of IPR. If you have an idea for a product and a brand, there is no better country to start that than in China.”
“Qianhai has always played a leading role in international cooperation. Now the scope of cooperation is even extended as expats are invited to join in the government administrative affairs, which I had never expected,” he said. “The environment is created to be friendly for foreign enterprises, people and talent. [Expats] can come and have a meaningful career here.”
Werner said Qianhai is a perfect place for living with a livable coastline and it has become a “prosperous and interesting area” in Shenzhen.
“Innovation often happens by mixing people with different ideas. Everyone in Shenzhen works to be successful and help others to be successful. As we have built a network with a few thousand tech-related professionals in it, I expect more people to come and to thrive together,” he said.
Werner moved to China in 2011 and has developed an LED display system used in football stadiums and has more than five years’ experience in the industry. He founded Trouble Maker in 2016 when mass entrepreneurship and innovation became a trend in the city. He then relocated his office from Huaqiangbei to Bao’an’s Gushu area, which has been rezoned in the newly released Qianhai plan as part of Qianhai cooperation zone.