CHINA MARCH FDI STAYS ROBUST AT $12.4 BILLION, OUTBOUND FLOWS UP 29.6% IN Q1
Foreign direct investment (FDI) in China rose 2.2% on the year in March, while outbound flows posted a milder rise, as foreign corporate investors remain undeterred by weakening domestic economic performance.
That brings inbound FDI up 11.3 % to $34.88 billion for the first quarter.
The data follows a series of disappointing data releases, highlighting flagging domestic fixed asset investment, including in property, and slowing industrial activity.
Foreign investment projects take time to conceive and implement, making FDI a lagging indicator of general confidence, but they have remained strong in recent months nevertheless.
Exceptionally strong growth in FDI inflows in the first two months of the year, including a nearly 874 % jump for Saudi Arabia and a 367% gain for France, were due to one-off deals.
Outbound investment for the first three months of the year combined rose 29.6 % from the same period in 2014 to $25.79.
The government has been encouraging Chinese firms to invest abroad to make them more competitive internationally, utilise surplus capacity, and help slow the rapid build-up of foreign exchange reserves.
Inbound FDI in China rose just 1.7 percent in 2014, the slackest pace since 2012. That weak performance accentuated a cooling economy which is spurring more Chinese firms to plough money into overseas asset, a trend that could soon overtake inbound investment.
Last year, China drew a record $119.6 billion of FDI, while outbound investment rose 14.1 percent to a new high of $102.9 billion.