Foreign companies in China actively promoted their charitable activities
in 2002, both to boost their images and make a contribution to society.
The Ford Environment Prize, one of the world's biggest environmental
awards, has been in China for the past three years.
"The prize aims to encourage Chinese people to participate in or
propose environmental protection plans," said Kenneth Hsu, vice-president
of sponsors Ford Motor China.
Worth 1 million yuan (120,000 US dollars) altogether, the prizeis divided
into three categories. The winners were chosen from 410applicants nationwide.
Having won favor with young urban Chinese, Coca-Cola is now eyeing those
in poor regions and has set up training programs for would-be university
From 1999, the company has helped 678 rural students with university
tuition fees. With these students now facing the challenge of finding
jobs, Coca-Cola was using a specialized company to train them in English
and interview skills, said Zhai Mei, associate external affairs director
of Coca-Cola China.
Noted energy company Alstom donated 100,000 yuan (12,500 US dollars)
to the Department of Electrical Engineering at Qinghua University, which
is Alstom's research partner in China.
Europe's largest mutual life insurance company Standard Life helped
rebuild three Hope Schools in Yunnan Province as well as set up an employees'
donation scheme to help students and teachersat the schools.
European aircraft manufacturer Airbus donated 60,000 yuan (7,500 US
dollars) to a Beijing orphanage.
US freight firm FedEx donated 30,000 US dollars to the ShanghaiArt Festival
and offered 1,000 free tickets to outstanding students from Shanghai universities.
FedEx also cooperated with China Eastern Airlines to deliver over 3,000
kg of flood relief supplies to Wuhan Airport.
In a mature market economy, a company can create its image through advertising
or charitable undertakings, experts said. In recent years, more and more
multinational companies in China have not only increased their investment
in advertising but are also doing more good deeds.