New opportunities in China's land remediation market for UK professionals 

Joanne Kwan, Project Manager, CIRIA.

China’s economy has had a quick recovery from the pandemic, and the government developed a number of measures to support the construction industry. In 2020, the total contract value of land remediation projects by public tendering in China increased by 30%, reaching 9 billion RMB (approximately £1 billion). 

NOW is an excellent time for UK specialists to get prepared for entering the Chinese contaminated land market. This is because:

  • the general awareness on land remediation in China has increased over the last decade
  • more national and provincial government funding have become available  
  • many drinking water sources, chemical factories, gas stations, landfills, etc. are on the government's groundwater clean up priority list
  • more than 100,000 industrial plots of land from key industries have been investigated, of which more than 13,000 plots have been identified as potentially contaminated and requires remediation. This is likely to increase as more heavy industry facilities (often owned by multinational enterprises) have to shut down and the polluted sites needed to be remediated
  • the upcoming implementation of the 'user pay' model and the enforcement of 'polluter pay' policy in May 2021 will encourage more land remediation projects

Many Chinese companies have a good understanding of basic remediation technology. However, there is a huge demand for sustainable and innovative approaches to manage complex land contamination projects in China and high interest in commercial cooperation with UK specialists. This was reflected in the four land remediation webinars hosted by the Department for International Trade (DIT) in collaboration with CIRIA in September 2020 where each event attracted more than 200 professionals from UK and China.  

With a wealth of knowledge gained from over three decades of contaminated land experience and a good worldwide track record, British contaminated land experts are well positioned to enter the Chinese market. 
DIT recently commissioned leading China land remediation experts to produce the Market Entry Report on China's Land Remediation Industry .
The document is a 'must have' resource and guide for UK contaminated land specialists who are interested in China's land remediation market. It provides:

  • an overview of the industry development and the current practices in China
  • an in-depth analysis of the market entry timing and barriers, 
  • an explanation of the benefits, risks of market entry routes and ways to manage the risks, 
  • recommendations for actions needed and a list of potential local partners. 

DIT and CIRIA will organize a free virtual meeting in May 2021 to launch this report and present the findings. The event will provide a rare opportunity to understand the benefits of working in China, demystify some misconceptions about China's land remediation market, and help you to develop strategies to successfully export your expertise to the contaminated land market in China. 

If you are interested in getting an e-copy of this report and/or attending this virtual meeting, please contact Jill Liang at the Department of International Trade (jill.liang@fcdo.gov.uk) before 30 April 2021.