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China's FDI falls 35.7% in July       Updated:August 17 10:33

BEIJING, Aug. 17 (Xinhua) -- China received 5.36 billion U.S. dollars of foreign direct investment (FDI) in July, down 35.7 percent year on year, said Ministry of Commerce spokesman Yao Jianon Monday.

China's total export-import volume between January and July decreased by 22.7 percent year on year to 1146.71 billion U.S. dollars. Imports and exports volume for July amounted to 200 billion U.S. dollars, illustrating smaller decline in foreign trade, Yao said. 

The amount of direct Taiwanese investment in the Chinese mainland totalled one billion U.S. dollars in the first half of the year, down 14.94 percent year on year, and the trade volume between the two shrank 35.1 percent to 52.53 billion U.S. dollars in the same period, he said.

Although the FDI is falling, the rate of decline in China was much smaller than the world average, indicating that China had a better investment environment than other developing countries, said Mei Xinyu, a researcher with the Academy of International Trade and Economic Cooperation of the Ministry of Commerce.  

According to a survey conducted by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development from February to May among 241multinational corporations, China was still the most attractive country to foreign capitals.

China's large market capacity and good infrastructure distinguished the country in foreign capital attraction, said Zhang Xiaoji, director of the Research Department of the Foreign Economic Relations of Development Research Center under the State Council.

Foreign-invested companies can list on Chinese stock markets in the future, said Yao.

Foreign capital plays an important role in the Chinese economy. In 2007 the output of foreign investment companies in China amounted to 12,503.69 billion yuan, accounting for 30.9 percent of China's industrial output, offering 420 million jobs, according to Ministry of Commerce General Office. The gross retail sales of social consumer goods totalled 6.86 trillion yuan (1 trillion U.S. dollars) between January and July, up 15 percent year on year, or 16.9 percent after deducting price factors, he said.

In July, the sales of consumer goods increased 15.2 percent to 993.7 billion yuan, or 18.1 percent after the deduction, he said.

The average price of 57 commodities including pork, eggs and flour rose 0.44 percent in July, which was the first month of price increase since February, he said.

Editor: Anne Tang