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Prejudice dents enterprises' overseas expansion


08:11, December 05, 2012

BEIJING, Dec. 4 (Xinhua) -- As China moves to invest billions in businesses around the world, Chinese entrepreneurs are trying to overcome the sense that their investment is not welcome there.

Although the reasons given are numerous, national security is routinely cited by politicians and media that oppose plans by Chinese enterprises to acquire or put money into foreign companies.

In the most recent case, Chinese tycoon Huang Nubo was denied permission by the Icelandic government for the second time to purchase a plot of land for the purpose of building a resort.

Huang, chairman of Beijing-based Zhongkun Investment Group Co., a property development company, said he has been "angry and annoyed" by his treatment.

"I did not get the fair treatment that an invited foreign investor is entitled to there," Huang said, adding that the Icelandic government has approved a dozen other investment plans from European and U.S. investors.

In August 2011, Huang sought to invest 200 million U.S. dollars in an Iceland resort, including more than 8 million U.S. dollars for purchasing land. The resort was intended to include a hotel, golf course and areas for outdoor activities.

However, Icelandic laws that forbid foreigners from purchasing land led him to seek a land lease instead.

Although Huang denied being part of any government scheme and insisted that he simply wanted to develop his tourism business, criticisms of the plan have taken on a geo-political flavor, fearing the resort could be used by China to gain a strategic foothold in Iceland.

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