Hong Kong may be a worrisome mess, but foreign
investment continues to like what it sees in the rest of the Greater Bay Area.
In Guangdong, 7,820 new foreign direct investment enterprises were established
in the first half of the year, worth RMB83.77 billion, up 5.9% YoY.
One of the highlights came from Fortune 500
company General Electric (GE), which has set up the Asian Biotechnology Park in
Guangzhou. It now plans to build a world-class offshore wind turbine assembly
base in Jieyang as well as an operation and development center in Guangzhou.
The provincial government has made efforts
recently to improving the business environment by introducing an “express lane”
for multinational companies to receive approval on projects. As a result,
Siemens has signed a comprehensive cooperation agreement with Guangdong, while
another 17 major projects have settled here.
It is little wonder Huawei chose Dongguan as the site of its biggest-ever developer conference, which is currently taking place at its new R&D-focused campus that looks like a mini-Europe. The city has released data showing that investment in “technological upgrading” shot up nearly 50% in the first half of the year.
In the wake of the Qianhai Cooperative Forum 2019, which was held at the weekend, the city has released statistics showing how fast the special economic zone is ramping up investments and output.
Official data shows utilized foreign direct investment in Qianhai jumped 12.1% to $2.533 billion in the first six months. Hong Kong companies were the most aggressive, and now account for nearly 90% of the zone’s total utilized FDI of US22 billion. Their utilized FDI was 60% of Shenzhen’s and 20% of the entire province’s during the first half.
Hong Kong-listed Colour Life, a property management and community service company, has announced that it would issue HK$371 million of shares to JD.com and HK$120 million to 360.com with cooperation deals to jointly build smart communities under business, logistics, financial and technological environments.
Despite Hong Kong’s increasingly violent political protests and rising tensions between protesters and the government, InvestHK remains “cautiously optimistic about the investment outlook in Hong Kong,” according to David Wong, head of strategic research.
“If we look at the economic fundamentals of Hong Kong and China, they remain strong,” said Wong in an interview with Greater Bay Insight. He added that the government body, which is tasked to attract and facilitate inward investment, continues to receive keen interest around the world and the pipeline remains healthy.
Zhuhai’s international airport is about to get a major upgrade. The city will spend RMB4.8 billion over the next eight years to expand capacity by adding a second terminal and other facilities. By 2027, it will be able to handle 198,000 flights, 27.5 million passengers and 104,000 tons of cargo and mail annually.
The new capacity, which includes 25 new parking stands, is called for in response to surging passenger throughput, which reached 11.22 million last year. The current terminal has a designed capability of 12 million.
Shenzhen-based telecom-equipment giant ZTE Corp is cashing out of its property assets in a creative way to address a liquidity crunch after the US$1.4 billion fine imposed last year by the US, reports Caixin Global.
ZTE acquired the land use rights of a plot in Shenzhen Bay Super Headquarters Base for RMB3.54 billion in 2017. It has reached an agreement with Shenzhen-based developer Vanke to develop it into a commercial complex as its new headquarters. Much of this land, however, is non-transferable according to the terms of the land acquisition. Where there is a will there is a way, however, and so ZTE has reportedly signed a supplementary agreement with Vanke to grant it more operational rights; in return, Vanke has agreed to bear all the costs for development and construction.
The chief executive of Huawei’s Italian unit, Thomas Miao, said at an event in Milan on Monday that Huawei would invest US$3.1 billion and add 1,000 jobs in Italy over the next three years, reports Reuters.
Miao also confirmed that the Chinese company would cut 1,000 jobs in the US. He said if the company is kept on a blacklist in August by Washington, it has “a plan B” to guarantee supplies of components.
Amcham South China predicted in a recent member survey that, despite the US-China trade war, its members were prepared to keep investing in the country. The same went for Britcham. Official data suggests they – and other foreign investors – kept their word. In the first half of 2019, Guangdong approved nearly 8,000 foreign direct investment projects, worth RMB83.77 billion, up 5.9% year-on year.
Big projects are the driver. The province has seen a 28.2% increase in projects worth more than US$100 million, totaling US$7.61 billion among 26 projects. Companies like General Electric, Exxon Mobil and BASF launched large industrial projects in second-tier cities like Jieyang, Huizhou, and Zhanjiang.
Around 40% of the total FDI went to the province’s free trade zones, which attracted RMB33.48 billion. The most favored sector is the high-tech industry, which utilized RMB13.83 billion of FDI, up 82%, in the first half. Investment from developed countries amounted to RMB11.08 billion, up more than 60%, among which France (+43 times), South Korea (+4.5 times) and Italy (+3.3 times) were the biggest.
Foshan’s Shunde district has signed a contract with the University of Bradford from the UK to establish a biotech and healthcare innovation center at Shunde’s Sanlongwan hi-tech zone.
The China-UK iBridge project aims to develop technologies to tackle neuro diseases for the elderly, such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. Shunde currently has more than 600 biotech and medical equipment companies.