China’s Magnetic Appeal to Foreign Investment

Representatives from nearly 40 multinational companies recently explored the opportunities in Xiong’an New Area, a city symbolizing China’s future development. Simultaneously, the China Council for the Promotion of International Trade facilitated communication between over 20 multinational companies and local government officials in Hefei, Anhui, fostering potential collaborations.

As China’s economy regains normalcy, scenes of such business engagements have become common across provinces. In the first eight months of this year, foreign executives’ visits to China have intensified, with a notable expansion in the depth and breadth of foreign investments. Tesla’s new energy super factory broke ground in Shanghai, Starbucks continued its rapid expansion, and Danfoss inaugurated its global refrigeration research and development center in Tianjin.

Despite fluctuations in some indicators, the enthusiasm for establishing foreign-invested enterprises in China remains strong, with 33% year-on-year growth, totaling 33,154 new enterprises, according to recent data from the Ministry of Commerce. This trend reflects multinational corporations’ sustained confidence in China’s investment climate.

Examining both scale and structure, actual foreign investment in China’s high-tech manufacturing sector grew by 19.7% in the first eight months of this year. Notable increases were observed in the electronics and communication equipment manufacturing industry (39.7%) and the medical instruments and apparatus manufacturing industry (25.6%). In the high-tech service industry, foreign investment in research and design services increased by 57.1%, highlighting an improvement in investment quality.

China’s attractiveness to foreign businesses is evident in a report by the China Council for the Promotion of International Trade, where nearly 70% of surveyed foreign enterprises expressed optimism about China’s market prospects over the next five years.

As part of a comprehensive effort to stabilize foreign investment, various policies have been implemented across China. The Ministry of Commerce initiated the “Invest in China Year” series of events, hosting over 20 key activities nationwide. Additionally, the China Council for the Promotion of International Trade adjusted its focus to conduct in-depth research, optimize the business environment, and assist local governments in attracting investment.

Provincial governments are also actively engaging with foreign enterprises. Hebei, for example, provides comprehensive support to foreign companies, addressing difficulties and issues encountered during project signing, construction, and production. Anhui has created various exchange platforms and organized events throughout the year to enhance cooperation, demonstrating the commitment to attracting foreign investment.

Multinational executives visiting China, including those from Adidas, Tesla, and Novartis, have expressed confidence in the country’s market potential and innovation ecosystem. The dynamic development, combined with higher-level openness, presents new opportunities for the world.

China’s commitment to deeper economic reforms is evident in its pilot free trade zones and the Hainan Free Trade Port, aligning with international high-standard trade and investment rules. The release of targeted policies by the State Council, such as the “Opinions on Further Optimizing the Business Environment for Foreign Investment,” emphasizes China’s dedication to stabilizing and increasing foreign investment.

The upcoming 6th China International Import Expo in November, with around 3,000 signed exhibitors and an exhibition area exceeding 360,000 square meters, provides a platform for multinational companies to deepen commitments in China.

In the words of Wang Yinghua, Vice President of the Cohen Group, “Business opportunities ultimately stem from demand. Considering factors such as the exploration of market potential, technological innovation, and the improvement of people’s living standards, as China progresses in its unique modernization, it continuously brings new opportunities to global enterprises.”