Despite the potential of Rovaniemi, many Chinese investors find it hard to get investment information in Finland or cope with cultural differences.
A Chinese investor emphasizes the need for promotional activities to
attract foreign investment in Rovaniemi and northern Finland. Speaking at a seminar on “Northern Means Business: From Berlin to Arctic
Ocean” organized by the House of Lapland on September 6 in Helsinki, Tian
Zhang, an investor and the Deputy
Managing Director of Nova-Roi Oy, also said the Chinese will take up ventures if they are aware of
In an interview after the seminar Zhang shared her ideas on how to
attract more Chinese investment in Rovaniemi and in Lapland, as well. Promotional
campaign is required for local companies to efficiently advertise their
potentials to Chinese investors, she felt.
“We need to let people know that
the potential of Rovaniemi is huge”, Zhang said.
Putting forward some recommendations for improving the investment climate
in Rovaniemi further, she said local businesses should work out “a whole
package” for investors, highlighting practical information about municipal
policies, potential sectors for investment, key products and investment
The seminar stressed that the city authorities take up more trade
promotion events to woo foreign investors. The initiative of the local tourism
board Visit Rovaniemi came up in the discussion. It recently organized annual
roadshow and business trips that brought local hoteliers and hospitality
companies as well as Chinese investors together to explore cooperation and
opportunities. Also, a preferential policy to grant resident permits for
Chinese investors was also recommended, among other special offers for trade
and investment promotion.
In recent years, Rovaniemi has attracted substantial foreign investment, mainly
from China in commerce and tourism. One of the pioneer projects is Nova Skyland
Hotel undertaken by Chinese company, Nova-Roi Oy, proving Chinese investors’
growing attention to Rovaniemi’s potentials. “Seeing the fast-paced growth in tourism
industry in Rovaniemi, we decided to run the project”, Tian Zhang said.
Construction work was started in September 2016. The hotel is expected to
begin commercial operation in October this year.
Talking about the construction process, Zhang highly appreciated the
quality of local building contractors. “Finnish people are very reliable”, she
affirmed. Apart from the Nova Skyland Hotel, other prominent projects under
Chinese investments in the northern area are also undergoing such as the
refinery factory in Kemijärvi.
Starting off as a Chinese language teacher at the University of Lapland,
Zhang found her own tourism-related business in Rovaniemi. After years of critical
market analysis, she gained certain knowledge of investment situation in the
city. Putting her whole efforts together with partners in hotel business, Zhang
believes the Nova Skyland project will be very promising along with the tourism
development in Rovaniemi.
Despite the potential of Rovaniemi, many Chinese investors find it hard
to get investment information in Finland or cope with cultural differences.
Obtaining investment permits is also not easy. “China’s economy has been growing
really fast, while Chinese investors have been looking for potential investment
projects in different countries; however, not many of them have enough
information regarding investment in Finland in general and in Rovaniemi in
particular”, Zhang pointed out.
Located on the Arctic Circle in Finland’s Lapland, Rovaniemi is endowed
with distinctively beautiful nature, different from other parts of Finland.
This is the place where tourists can have unique travel experiences like
midnight sun, northern lights and visiting Santa Claus. Also, considered a
wintertime hub with extended Christmas season, Rovaniemi’s image has
dramatically changed on a large scale thanks to the increasing local and
international tourism investments.
“I feel positive about Rovaniemi in the
coming years, when the tourism industry will develop even faster with its
gifted strengths”, Zhang remarked.
City of Rovaniemi-Daily Finland Report