Analyses & Studies

Assessing China’s post zero-covid business climate.

CCI FRANCE CHINE Spring Survey 2023 Report - 03/01/2023

The end of the zero-Covid policy has an overall positive impact on the activity of French companies in China


With more than 2,100 subsidiary companies employing close to 445,000 people, France is the first European investor in China by the number of companies. With its 1,600 members, the French Chamber of Commerce and Industry in China (CCI FRANCE CHINE) represents the interests of French companies since 1992.

Following up on the survey published in September 2022, the French Chamber of Commerce and Industry in China (CCI FRANCE CHINE) interrogated its members between January 31st and February 17th, 2023 on how the ending of the zero-Covid policy has impacted their activity. Three hundred five companies responded to the survey.


Read the report of the survey here.

Consulter le rapport de l'enquête ici.



Read the findings of the survey below:

  • The immediate impact of the latest Covid-19 wave on the activities of member companies was considerable. Half of the respondents indicated that the entirety of their staff was infected by the virus; only 5 % reported that 60 % or less was infected. Consequently, 41 % of the respondents had to interrupt their activities for at least a week during the winter outbreak due to a lack of available workforce.


  • However, the majority of companies experienced a swift return to normal. 88 % of the respondents report that close to all (91 % to 100 %) of their employees already recovered from COVID and resumed work.


  • While almost three-fifths of member companies achieved net profit in 2022, nearly half (46 %) of the respondents reported a worse-than-expected turnover or profit, and 39 % recorded a lower turnover than the previous year. 21 % of respondents even report a net loss over the year.


  • The lifting of Covid restrictions positively impacts the respondents’ perception of China. One third of respondents report that the Covid policy shift has positively impacted their willingness to invest in China; half say their perception hasn’t changed.


  • Compared to the previous survey, members report a higher willingness to develop their activities in China in the next three years, with up to 47 % planning to further invest in the country (against 23 % in September). 27 % of respondents report no planned extension of their presence in China (against 43 % in September), and 7 % report downsizing plans (down from 16 % in September).


  • The remaining uncertainties surrounding the spread of Covid-19 (59 %, down from 89 % in September), the slowdown of the Chinese economy (48%), and market access restrictions (21 %) are listed as the primary factors determining investment strategies by French companies in China.


  • Almost two-thirds of respondents expect their turnover to increase in 2023. 22 % expect it to remain unchanged, and 14 % expect it to decrease. Up to 80 % of members report a planned headquarters visit to China during 2023.


The survey results highlight that the lifting of Covid restrictions has a positive impact on China’s business environment; the CCI FRANCE CHINE and its members welcome this long-called-for policy change. But while this change of course has partially restored confidence in China’s economic potential, companies remain highly cautious in their engagement with China after three years marked by an unprecedented degree of unpredictability.


Read the report of the survey here.

Consulter le rapport de l'enquête ici.