(Corrects spelling of name in paragraph 6 to Hanemann, not
BEIJING, Sept 17 China's outbound direct
investment (ODI )is expected to surpass $1 trillion for the
first time in 2015, as slowing economic growth and rising
internationalisation of Chinese business see more local
companies investing overseas.
Total direct investment offshore increased to just under
$883 billion in 2014, Zhang Xiangchen, Deputy China
International Trade Representative at the Ministry of Commerce
(Mofcom), said on Thursday.
The commerce ministry on Wednesday reported that
non-financial outbound direct investment rose 18.2 percent to
473.4 billion yuan, or $77 billion, for the first eight months
of the year.
Mofcom on Thursday also revised up its 2014 offshore
non-financial direct investment tally to $107.2 billion from the
$102.9 billion reported previously, taking total outward
investment for the year to $123.12 billion.
"Our outbound investment has maintained a double-digit
growth rate, and this trend will be sustained in future," Zhang
told a media briefing.
China's slowing economy and market volatility is driving
domestic firms to acquire foreign brands and technology, as well
as diversifying, said Thilo Hanemann, Research Director at
Rhodium Group in New York.
The Beijing government has rolled out policies to support
the global efforts of Chinese companies, offering financial
incentives and removing administrative controls on offshore
Chinese firms have already announced or completed 390 deals
worth $77 billion in the year to Sept 16, according to Thomson
Reuters data, a doubling of the deal amount for the same period
China's global M&A deal volume this year already surpasses
the $70.4 billion in deals reached in 2008, formerly the biggest
year so far for offshore mergers.
Industrial deals were the biggest transactions, led by China
National Chemical Corp's buyout of Italian tyre-maker Pirelli &
C Spa for $8.88 billion, which included Pirelli's
Many of this year's big-ticket deals were done by Chinese
firms buying financial services businesses, including HNA Group
Co's subsidiary Bohai Leasing Co, which paid $2.56
billion for aviation leasing firm Avolon Holdings Ltd.
By the end of 2014, 18,500 Chinese domestic investors had
established nearly 30,000 enterprises overseas, with about 77
percent showing profits in 2014, Zhang said.
"State-owned firms and private companies are looking to buy
overseas financial institutions that are yielding strong
cash-flow and providing an international presence and market
share," said Eugene Qian, China country head for UBS Ltd.
(Reporting By Matthew Miller and Xiaoyi Shao; Editing by Eric