"Britain is fighting for its share in areas where it has a discernible competitive advantage, and that is no different than other countries," says James Berkeley, managing director of the London-based management advisory service Ellice Consulting.
More than 40 deals worth about $30 billion are likely to be signed during Li's visit to Britain, Chinese media say. Benefits may go to British universities that depend on Chinese students, China hotel designer InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) and financial-service companies such as Aon (AON).
Two-way trade reached $70 billion last year, largely on recent Chinese investments in the U.K.
London is also keen to build on its advantage as the only place outside Asia where Chinese yuan can be freely traded, a boost to banks with clients in China. That topic will probably come up during the premier's visit, China Daily says.
Even if the deals don't yield an instant bonanza, the visit carries weight with Beijing.
"Most current China-U.K. trade pronouncements are largely symbolic and a small handful is really meaningful and immediately useful," Berkeley says. "That is not wrong because symbolism is a highly important pre-cursor with Chinese officials."
At the time of publication, the author had no position in any of the stocks mentioned.
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