20100914 wen jiabao 18
China's Premier Wen Jiabao speaks on the opening day of the World Economic Forum in the Meijiang Convention Centre in Tianjin. - 


STEVE CHIOTAKIS: The World Economic Forum is meeting in China. At its opening ceremony, China Premier Wen Jiabao
admitted that some of China's policies are making
it hard for foreign businesses in China.

Marketplace's Shanghai bureau chief Rob Schmitz reports.

ROB SCHMITZ: It wasn't an apology. But Premier Wen's rare admission of guilt was exactly what foreign investors in China wanted to hear.

CHRISTIAN MURCK: I thought it was very encouraging and consistent with he's been saying recently.

Christian Murck is president of the American Chamber of Commerce in China. Lately his group has been on the offensive against China, criticizing the country for making life more difficult for foreign businesses. One Chinese policy in his crosshairs gives preferential treatment to Chinese technology over foreign technology for government contracts.

Murck hopes Wen's comments signal change.

MURCK: A more active and serious dialogue is certainly in progress, but I haven't seen any change in behavior yet.

Other foreign investors haven't seen it yet, either. Most of them agree whether it's shutting foreign companies out of government contracts or blatantly pirating foreign technology, China can still be a tricky place to do business.

In Shanghai, I'm Rob Schmitz for Marketplace.

Follow Rob Schmitz at @rob_schmitz