Against the backdrop of a slowdown in China’s overseas investments and increasing risks in making investments abroad in the first half of 2014, the eastern Chinese coastal city of Qingdao worked hard toward its annual targets and took a series of measures to ensure a steady growth in its outbound investments.
In the period of January-June, Qingdao approved new outbound investments worth $870 million, an increase of 11.4 percent, which was 16 percentage points higher than the national level over the same period. The investments accounted for 23 percent of Shandong province’s total approved new investments abroad in the first half of the year.
The city promoted its overseas investments using a number of measures:
Firstly, the city gave full play to the role of policy support and made active efforts to get state and provincial funding support for overseas investment and cooperation projects. The state’s special funding for overseas investment and cooperation projects that Qingdao secured in the first half rose by 83 percent over the same period last year.
Enterprises were encouraged to make investments in the construction of overseas economic and trade cooperation parks and to acquire developed countries’ advanced technologies, R&D centers, renowned brands, marketing networks and resources and energy industries.
Secondly, the Qingdao municipal government enhanced services for major projects. The city selected 30 key outbound investment projects and offered related enterprises personalized policy services, helping them tackle difficulties and problems in making investments abroad and offering them guidance on how to make a stage-by-stage, step-by-step overseas expansion focusing on their major concerns.
Thirdly, the city took advantage of high-level visits and organized about 200 enterprises to attend 19 two-way investment and trade promotion activities held in Europe, Africa and Southeast Asia, giving exposure to the world of Qingdao’s key areas as well as its major investment and cooperation projects.
Fourthly, the city cooperated with financial institutions including China Development Bank, the Export-Import Bank of China, the State Administration of Foreign Exchange, and China Export and Credit Insurance Corporation to jointly help enterprises tackle difficulties and problems in financing their overseas projects.
Fifthly, Qingdao took a series of measures to improve overseas investment information services, including a Web portal publishing important up-to-date project information and research on the investment environment such as state policies, as well as market and social conditions. The city also kept close contacts with the economic and commercial councilors’ offices of China’s embassies overseas, Qingdao’s international economic partnership cities and Chinese investment promotion organizations. It integrated various information resources and provided valuable references to enterprises.
Finally, the city established a government responsibility mechanism for overseas investment and cooperation projects to ensure timely tracking on the progress of major projects and point-to-point coordination services for enterprises. A monthly report on major projects was also required.
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