BRITISH freight forwarder McGregor Sea & Air Services (MSAS) says its growth this year has stagnated, dogged by government bureaucracy and red tape in trying to penetrate the China market. Peter Tang, MSAS general manager of Hong Kong and southern China operations, said the company had been unable to make inroads into China, although it had representative offices in Beijing, Tianjin and Guangzhou, because it did not have its own facilities. ''We are working hard to overcome this but there is a lot of government bureaucracy and red tape,'' he said, adding that the group preferred a more orthodox approach. As a multinational corporation, the group has plans to set up joint ventures in China, between Beijing and Shenzhen, he said. The company was now planning to rectify the situation through joint ventures in the mainland. Stephen Chan, MSAS regional general manager for East Asia, said: ''We have to look at a 10-year investment period and it is difficult to counter the balances of the political instability of the Chinese market.'' MSAS, which is part of the UK-based Ocean Group, has recorded an average 12 per cent growth and forecasts a conservative nine per cent growth in 1994. Mr Chan said: ''What we need is step-by-step action [in China] which will take a few years to develop.''