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Foreign direct investment goals high
( 2003-09-05 09:37) (Shanghai Daily)

China's attempt to attract US$60 billion of foreign direct investment this year was questioned Thursday as actually-used FDI reported for July was less than the average amount of the first six months this year.

The ministry of Commerce said China actually used US$3.1 billion of foreign investment in July, compared with a monthly average of US$5 billion in the first half of this year.

Hu jingyan, a senior official with the MOC, admitted that it would be difficult for the country to top US$60 billion of FDI by the end of this year, which means the country would have to use US$5.3 billion of FDI every month in the last five months.

But actual FDI was still expected to reach US$56 billion to US$58 billion this year with year-on-year growth of seven to 10 percent.

China used US$33.35 billion of FDI in the first seven months of 2003, a rise of 26.63 percent year-on-year while contractual FDI rose by 33.96 percent to US$59.17 billion, according to ministry figures.

Last year the country reported record high FDI of US$52.7 billion - the highest in the world.

The outbreak of SARS in the first half of this year had not seriously damaged the country's economy in the second quarter. FDI reported for June was US$6.98 billion.

The impact seemed delayed until July when some 500 foreign investment projects were affected by the epidemic.

China was facing more competition from other countries in the global market as they lifted government controls and widened market access, said Ma Xiuhong, vice-minister of commerce.

China has to further improve its domestic environment to increase competitiveness in the global capital market, she said.

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