Dongfanghong brand tractors, produced by YTO Group Corp, a subsidiary of China National Machinery Industry Corp, roll off the assembly line at a plant in Luoyang, Henan province. [Wang Song / Xinhua]
Xu Niansha submitted a simple but highly focused proposal in March as a new member of the 12th National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference, the nation's top political advisory body.
He said the central government should help and support State-owned enterprises buy high technology from abroad.
A look at what Xu and his company, China National Machinery Industry Corp (Sinomach), is all about shows that his proposal is more than reasonable.
During the past two years, Xu, vice-chairman of Sinomach, has traveled abroad more often - not for leisure or to inspect contract engineering projects but to seek possible energy and high-tech investment deals.
"We are looking especially at European countries, like Germany, France and Italy. In the past, our counterparts in these countries were unwilling to cooperate with us, but now things are different while the European Union debt crisis continues, as some cannot even survive," he said.
With many peers in developed countries on the brink of bankruptcy and struggling to raise capital, Sinomach, China's largest machinery manufacturing company, is diversifying its business and looking at companies in the high-tech sector, in particular, in an attempt to improve technology and enhance its industrial competitiveness in the global market.
"We expect to add investment abroad in the industrial manufacturing and energy sectors, while we continue to strengthen our presence as a major external engineering contract service provider worldwide," said Xu.
"We are carrying out investigations into some foreign companies from the machine tools and equipment manufacturing industries and we are always prepared to spend on deals that we want."
Sinomach is not a new name worldwide. It has thermal power stations in Indonesia, rail projects in Argentina and power stations in Africa.
Its projects cover 75 nations and regions, and in Africa alone, its business involved more than 20 nations by the end of 2011.
Besides engineering contracts and design, its business stretches to equipment manufacturing and research and development, and foreign trade.