China to ease rules on outbound investment

By Yan Pei
0 CommentsPrint E-mail, March 3, 2011
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China's top economic planner, the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC), will further relax rules on overseas investment by Chinese companies as part of the 12th Five-Year Plan (2011-2015), top advisers said.

The NDRC is working with the Ministry of Commerce on a law to facilitate Chinese companies' globalization and investment in overseas markets, Kong Linlong, director of the NDRC's Foreign Capital Utilization Department, told reporters Tuesday at the 9th Transnational Corporations China Forum in Beijing.

Besides the loosening of investment restrictions, the NDRC is also considering establishing a communication mechanism between relevant Chinese government agencies and their foreign counterparts in order to facilitate Chinese overseas investment, Kong said.

In recent years, Chinese companies have become more aware of the importance of expanding overseas and have become more interested in foreign investment. According to Kong, Chinese direct outbound investment (DOI) rose 35 percent during the 2006-2010 period, four times the amount invested during the 2001-2005 period. By the end of 2010, China's DOI totaled nearly US$330 billion.

However, Chinese firms still face numerous challenges in seeking access to overseas markets. The lack of professional management talent, the absence of domestic investment banks and rising Western resistance to Chinese takeovers are holding back overseas development, Kong said.

The Transnational Corporation China Forum, held annually since 2002, is organized by Chinese Academy of International Trade & Economic Cooperation, the Ministry of Commerce, and the Beijing New Century Academy on Transnational Corporations. Each year, scholars, government officials and executives of transnational corporations gather in Beijing and discuss the opportunities and challenges faced by transnational corporations. This year, the forum's theme is TNCs and China's Peaceful Rise.

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