Jiaxing: A city of growth and opportunities
Joshua Evans (2nd from right) and his friends. [Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn]
Editor's note: We have asked expats living in Zhejiang to share their own stories with the cities they work and live in the province. Joshua Evans is a British who has been working in Jiaxing for more than two years.
I admit, I had never heard of Jiaxing until I started working for British company: Luceco Plc that manufacturers fixed and portable electrical products at their factory in Xiuzhou district of Jiaxing City.
I first came to Jiaxing on a business trip in 2017, to work on compliance engineering issues. I was eager to meet my colleagues that I had been working for three years that I had only ever spoke to over emails and video calls. My Chinese colleagues went out of their way to welcome me, giving me a tour of the factory and in the evenings, a tour of Jiaxing to see local attractions, such as Moon River, Haogu Pagoda and the famous South Lake.
Whilst I was on the business trip the CEO asked me how I liked China so far? I thoroughly enjoyed it; it is much easier to solve export and product compliance issues in China and I enjoyed learning about all parts of the business. Thus, in 2018 I moved to China permanently and I haven't looked back since.
Joshua Evans (1st from right) receives Xiuzhou Friendship Award. [Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn]
Jiaxing is developing fast: When our factory was built, we were one of the first factor on the Xiuzhou National High-tech Zone. Now the area is full of new companies and top engineering talents. Every month, there are new infrastructure projects around the city, making the city more attractable for businesses and families, from the new north to south highway through the center of city, new shopping malls, the Fruit Distribution Center expansion, to the new tram system being completed in 2021.
Jiaxing is a beautiful city full of greenery, roads and rivers intertwine throughout to make a tranquil environment,especially in Xiuzhou district. Jiaxing has all the amenities and shopping you could desire. Five minutes outside of the city you will be surround by some of the richest, greenest farmland in Zhejiang, fields full of oranges, grapes, peaches, perfect for a quick escape from the city. Jiaxing is full of newly built, lush green parks including Xiuhu Lake which has a picturesque running/cycling path around the 5-kilometer lake.
Joshua Evans (3rd from left) plays football with his friends. [Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn]
Whilst visiting one of the local parks I stumbled across the local Jiaxing Boating Water Club and I was promptly invited to join them kayaking. I had no experience in kayaking, but the members were friendly and welcoming and taught me the techniques. Since then, I have traveled all over Zhejiang competing in kayaking competitions. I was introduced to the expat community in Jiaxing via a Spanish colleague, and since then we have formed a foreigner football team and play weekly, all ages and skill levels play from over 15 countries. Football is an international language that brings everyone together.
Recently I have found myself a smart, beautiful, Jiaxing girlfriend so when people ask how long will I stay in Jiaxing? I reply, I will stay in Jiaxing for many years, possibly forever. What more can you ask for in life, if you enjoy your work, the city you live in, a loving relationship and have made friends for life?
Joshua Evans introduces the business environment of Xiuzhou district as a representative of local companies at a promotion meeting held by Xiuzhou National High-Tech Zone in Shanghai this year. [Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn]