Jan-Sept overseas investment up 12.4%

Updated: 2011-11-08 16:58


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BEIJING - Chinese companies invested $40.8 billion in non-financial sectors overseas in the first three quarters, up 12.4 percent from a year earlier, despite the global financial crisis, a senior official said Tuesday.

Chinese companies have been investing vigorously in foreign countries this year, despite the global slowdown in international investment activity caused by faltering economic recovery, Zhang Xiaoqiang, deputy director of the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC), the country's top economic planner, said at the third China Overseas Investment Fair in Beijing.

China's outbound direct investment reached $68.8 billion in 2010, up 21.7 percent from a year earlier, ranking above developing countries and surpassing Japan and Germany to be the world's fifth largest source of foreign direct investment outflows, Zhang said.

By the end of 2010, Chinese companies had invested a total of $317.2 billion in more than 178 countries and regions, according to Zhang.

As State-owned enterprises speed up overseas investment, more and more private-owned companies are also seeking opportunities abroad, he said.

The government will continue to support competent Chinese companies in investing abroad in the future, with improved protection mechanism, legal system, services and supervision, Zhang added.

The NDRC granted its provincial arms more authority in approving overseas investment in February, a step toward giving enterprises a greater say in investment project decisions.

Under the new rule, companies planning to invest less than $300 million in the resource sector, or less than $100 million in other industries overseas, only need approval from provincial economic planners, and not from the NDRC.