Interview: Austrian president's China visit to see talks on potential projects: Austrian official

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VIENNA, April 3 (Xinhua) -- With Austrian President Alexander Van der Bellen and Chancellor Sebastian Kurz bringing Austria's largest-ever delegation to China this month, joint ventures may get a boost, especially related to the Belt and Road Initiative, a senior member of parliament and business expert has said.

While Austrian companies have GPS and communication technology for trains, the Chinese company has expertise in constructing trains. A collaboration would see new trains for the European market, meeting the continent's standards, he said.

Austria intends to switch totally to renewable energy by 2050. China is also harnessing clean energy with large-scale development of wind, water, and solar energy infrastructure.

He held up Chinese company CRRC Zhuzhou Electric Locomotive, which has its European headquarters in Vienna, as an example of possible teamwork.

On their China visit from April 7-12, Van der Bellen and Kurz will be accompanied by around 170 business leaders. The Austrian delegation will take a portfolio of more such potential projects to China, Matznetter added.

Christoph Matznetter, vice president of the Austrian Economic Chambers, told Xinhua that Austrian companies are keen on business opportunities in Central Asian countries such as Kazakhstan and Azerbaijan, particularly in renewable energy.

Some projects are already on the drawing board and the Belt and Road Initiative could give them an impetus, he said.

Matznetter said Austria sources much of its solar energy technology from China, while China acquires much of its wind power technology from Austria. Austria is also involved in the biodiesel fuel industry in China.

Environmental technologies are another potential area for collaboration, Matznetter said, adding that both countries have similar thoughts on sustainability, environmental protection and alternative energy use.