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Dutch, Belgian dredgers try to penetrate Chinese market

Tags: Excerpts from the Windmill

BEJING - Assisted by Dutch Junior Minister for Economic Affairs Schultz van Hagen, representatives of the four largest dredging firms in the world are trying to gain a foothold in the lucrative Chinese market. Together, Boskalis and Van Oord of the Netherlands and Belgian groups DEME and Jan De Nul already control sixty percent of the world market. China has put up economic barriers however, charging foreign companies a tax rate of 35 percent per project, while Chinese competitors pay only four percent. Copying the U.S. Dredging Act of 1902, China also forced foreign firms to have the actual work done by Chinese companies. Experts concede that Chinese dredging firms are quite capable of performing routine projects while the Dutch argue their expertise in dredging-related environmental science is far advanced.