Blog: China's 'strings attached'
Dave Leggett | 10 June 2003
And then there's technology transfer and intellectual property rights. If you don't play ball, they'll threaten to play ball with someone who will and you don't want your China strategy to look bad compared with those of your competitors. The shareholders wouldn't like it. Better to bite the bullet, share technology and hope that the consequences further down the road are not too hard to live with. Sorry, what's that? Market leader and biggest investor in China, VW Group, has already had its fingers burnt? I guess that's true. Just take a look at FAW's 'Red Flag'-branded and thinly disguised Audi 100 (which FAW used to make). And the spirit of partnership wasn't exactly evident when SAIC Chery Automobile - part-owned by VW's Shanghai Volkswagen partner, SAIC - said last year that it wasn't worried about VW's objection to VW-branded parts finding their way into its own vehicles because, wait for it, it could now manufacture them itself!
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