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Experts laud China's proposed foreign investment reform

Xinhua | Updated: 2017-05-31 13:28

SYDNEY — Australian experts have lauded the move by the Chinese government to begin the process of easing the laws for foreign investment into China, after a meeting of the Central Leading Group for Deepening Overall Reform took place on Tuesday.

China's Ministry of Commerce figures outlined that during the first four months of the year, foreign capital utilized in China was $41.6 billion, with that number constituting a tiny dip of 0.1 percent over the corresponding period.

The key party meeting revised the guidance catalogue for foreign investment in China, in order to ensure that more opportunities were created for overseas investment to make its way into China.

This is a very positive move towards improving many vital sectors in China's economy, according to James Laurenceson, deputy director of the Australia-China Relations Institute at the University of Technology Sydney.

"Greatly reducing the number of sectors in which foreigners are barred from participating would be viewed extremely positively by foreign investors," Laurenceson told Xinhua.

Dr Alice de Jonge, senior lecturer in Business Law and Taxation at Monash University agreed, saying that this move is part of a process to open and expand China, in a number of key sectors.

"It will be a great thing for global economies, like Australia," said Alice de Jonge.

The field of education is one area in which these reforms will be crucial, according to Professor Jiang Fuming, head of the School of Management at Curtin University, who explained to Xinhua that the impact of increased foreign investment in that particular sector will be immense.

"It will have a huge impact on people and organizations to become more innovative, efficient, and effective," Jiang said.

Jiang said that the leadership decision was pivotal, as it also indicated a strong message that will reverberate at all levels of the Chinese economy.

"It is a signal of change, from quantity to quality, substantial development," Jiang said.

Aside from the clear and defined benefits to the domestic economy in China, the reforms will play a complementary role in enhancing the Belt and Road Initiative, and Jiang said this will lead to mutually beneficial partnerships across the globe.

The furthering of the successful strides towards globalization that will result from the investment reform is, according to Jiang, tied into the Belt and Road Initiative.

Globalization is the true crux of the reforms, and Laurenceson said that he hopes the outcomes of the key meeting are able to be achieved on the widest scale possible.

"Countries like Australia that support open markets would come out in loud support of Chinese moves in this direction," Laurenceson said.

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