China's consistently high growth rates, achieved through rapid industrialisation, have propelled it at breakneck speed up global economic league tables. However, these achievements have come with a heavy environmental cost. In fact, the environmental situation has deteriorated to such a level that it raises the question to the purpose of economic growth.
Now China is changing its direction from the pursuit of economic growth at all cost to clearly pursuing an accelerated green agenda. A more balanced growth will erode the reliance on energy-intensive, high-emissions, heavy industries. Instead, we'll see the pursuit of greener, technology-driven and energy efficient economic activity and investments. That, in turn, will drive demand for new technologies to improve energy conservation, achieve lower emissions, drive greater recycling and tackle pollution.
As China's demand shrinks, businesses in energy-intensive industrie will need to review their strategies to drive future growth. At the same time, the developments taking place in China will create more opportunities for foreign businesses that can respond to the changing demand for greener, technology-driven capabilities.