Updated: 2011-03-18 13:49
(China Daily European Weekly)
Indicators February inflation exceeds estimates
China's inflation index exceeded expectations in February because of high food prices. Economists expect it to continue climbing in the coming months.
The consumer price index (CPI), a key gauge of inflation, rose 4.9 percent year-on-year in February, the National Bureau of Statistics said on March 11. Expectations for the month ranged from 4.6 percent to 4.8 percent. The figure was unchanged from the January figure, but higher than 4.6 percent registered in December.
Food prices, which account for about 30 percent of the basket, climbed 11 percent from a year earlier and contributed 67 percent to the growth in CPI, according to Sheng Laiyun, a spokesman for the statistics bureau.
FDI continues to grow steadily
China's foreign direct investment (FDI) maintained its robust growth in February, driven by overseas investors' appetite for the planned industrial restructuring, which tops the agenda of the country's economic development over the next five years.
The Ministry of Commerce said on March 15 that China's FDI increased 32.2 percent to $7.8 billion (5.6 billion euros) in February from a year earlier, following an increase of 23.4 percent in January.
The number of newly approved foreign-funded companies fell 10.9 percent last month, compared with the same period last year, according to the ministry.
Eximbank set to expand networks
The Export-Import Bank of China (China Eximbank) is planning to broaden both its domestic and overseas networks to strengthen support for Chinese companies that invest abroad, Li Ruogu, chairman and president of the bank, said on March 11.
The bank wants to open branches in Hong Kong, Africa and Paris, and three in China in Tianjin municipality, the Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region, and Xiamen in East China's Fujian province.
At the end of 2010, the assets of China Eximbank exceeded 1 trillion yuan (109 billion euros) for the first time. It now has 10 domestic business branches and representative offices, and offices in France, Russia and South Africa.
Bosch gearing up for another boom
German technology and service provider Robert Bosch GmbH regards China as the major destination for its future investment as it sees the huge market potential from China's robust economic growth.
Bosch's business in China increased some 30 percent on average in terms of revenue over the past five years, said Uwe Raschke, board member of Bosch who is responsible for coordination of company activities in the Asia-Pacific region.
Raschke said the company's sales jumped almost 40 percent last year, based on 27 billion yuan (2.9 billion euros) in sales it gained in 2009 from the China market.
Bosch's preliminary figures for 2010 showed that the German company returned to its growth course in 2010 from the serious financial crisis in 2008. It generated sales of 47.3 billion euros, 24 percent more than the previous year, the highest level of annual sales in the 125 years of its history.
ABB to maintain investment pace
Power and automation technology giant, ABB Group, will invest more than $100 million (71.6 million euros) in China this year to maintain its robust growth in the country, a senior official said.
"We will keep up our investment scale in China this year, as we have maintained strong organic growth in 2010 in spite of the global financial crisis and challenging market conditions in the power transmission domain," said Claudio Facchin, president of ABB North Asia Region and China.
With energy efficiency, industrial productivity and power reliability as its key business drivers, ABB has kept a steady annual investment of more than $100 million in China during the past seven years in manufacturing facilities, refining and expanding designs, and localizing the latest technologies and products.
Soybean self-sufficiency could be raised
With enormous potential and a growing market, China will be able to raise its self-sufficiency rate in soybeans to 30 percent within three years, said Liu Denggao, vice-president of the China Soybean Industry Association.
China imported 54.8 million tons of soybeans in 2010, the largest in its history, compared with 15.2 million tons of domestic production, General Administration of Customs data showed. The country's self-sufficiency rate currently stands at 22 percent.
"To raise the self-sufficiency rate to 30 percent in soybeans is achievable with greater policy supports from the government and increasing production capabilities," Liu said.
Nokia Siemens renegotiates $1.2b bid
Nokia Siemens Networks is seeking to renegotiate its $1.2 billion (858.1 million euros) purchase of wireless network assets from Motorola Solutions Inc, Bloomberg reported.
The network-equipment joint venture between Nokia Oyj and Siemens AG wants to exclude
the Global System for Mobile
communications, or GSM, unit from the acquisition and renegotiate the price accordingly in order to win antitrust approval by the Chinese government, the report said.
The Espoo, Finland-based company said earlier that the deal will not close in the first quarter, resulting in the second delay in three months. Motorola Solutions said the Chinese government extended its review period for another 60 days.
Nation now the world's second art market
China has overtaken the United Kingdom to become the world's second-largest art market after the United States, according to research published by the British Art Market Federation on March 14.
Auction sales in China totaled almost 6 billion euros in 2010,
giving the country a 23 percent share of the global market.
The US continues to dominate, with 34 percent. The UK remains Europe's biggest auction center, with 22 percent of international sales.
Welcome to the 'world of smiles' where life meanders slowly.
A massive 8.8 magnitude quake hit the northeast coast of Japan on March 11,2011.
Lawmakers and political advisers gather in Beijing to discuss major issues.
Devastating earthquake and tsunami left millions without water, electricity, homes or heat.