Business / Green China

Going green urged in overseas investment

By Li Jiabao (China Daily) Updated: 2013-11-07 10:38

Chinese companies are encouraged to pay greater attention to green and sustainable operations in going global, reports Li Jiabao

As China actively boosts outbound investment, enterprises are urged to build a new competitive edge by utilizing green operational standards and bringing more benefits to host regions, elements considered crucial for sustainable development in the long run.

"Chinese enterprises will follow a spiral growth trend during the drive of going abroad to tap international markets and the journey certainly won't be smooth sailing. Overseas investment started to grow in 2004, and surged after the 2008 financial crisis," Peng Yali, director and head of research of KPMG Global China Practice, told China Daily in an interview.

"Our study suggests that China's outward direct investment in the near future is likely to face a period of adjustment, owing to risk control and green operations and so on. The pace may slow down after fast growth in the past decade. The slowdown and the fluctuations in some years could be a good time for enterprises to reflect on their strategies for further improvement while the overall trend of China's ODI (outward direct investment) will maintain growth," Peng added.

Non-financial outward direct investment experienced fast expansion over the past decade. In 2012, China ranked third among all economies in terms of ODI flows. The country's non-financial ODI registered $77.73 billion last year, up 13.3 percent from a year earlier and compared with $2.7 billion in 2002, according to the 2012 Statistical Bulletin of China's Outward Foreign Direct Investment.

In the first nine months of this year, China's non-financial ODI increased 17.4 percent from a year earlier to $61.64 billion, according to the Ministry of Commerce.

China is deepening its comprehensive reforms and opening itself up to the world. In the next five years, the country's overseas investment is expected to reach $500 billion.

China's ODI covered all sectors but centered on seven - leasing and business services, finance, mining, wholesale and retail, manufacturing, logistics and construction. They accounted for 92.4 percent of the China's total ODI by the end of 2012. Meanwhile, Asia and Latin America received 81.3 percent of the country's total ODI stock at the end of last year, according to the bulletin.

"The major destinations for China's ODI are now shifting from Asian regions to Europe and North America as Chinese enterprises are increasingly interested in infrastructure investment and the acquisition of advanced technology in high-end manufacturing as well as brands. Meanwhile, agribusiness and food processing will be a highlight in China's future ODI," said Peng.

He added: "China will see a group of multinational corporations emerging from manufacturing sectors and private businesses as the country heads for the high end in some manufacturing industries."

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