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Chinese investments in Australia declined by 36.3 percent in 2018: report

(People's Daily Online)    16:47, April 12, 2019

SYDNEY, April. 9 (People’s Daily Online/ Yunxin Bao) Chinese investment in Australia fell by 36.3 percent in AUD terms in 2018, to its second-lowest level, according to a new report by KPMG and the University of Sydney Business School.

The jointly produced report says that Chinese investment in the Australian market has plunged from AUD 13 billion (USD 10 billion) in 2017 to AUD 8.2 billion (USD 6.2 billion) in 2018.

According to the Chinese investors in Australia Survey, Chinese executives still see Australia as a relatively attractive place to invest with an improving political climate and there has been a slight increase in their sense of feeling welcome.

Healthcare industry jumped to become the most popular sector for Chinese investment, with a total of AUD 3.4 billion, representing a 111 percent increase over 2017. Meanwhile, commercial real estate investment fell to second place.

As the report points out, while global foreign direct investment in 2018 declined by 19 percent to USD 1.2 trillion, Chinese global outbound direct investment still increased by 4.2 percent in 2018 to reach USD $129.8 billion.

Geographically, Chinese investment was again focused on NSW in 2018 with AUD 4.4 billion or 53 percent of the total value. Victoria remained in second position with 27 percent of the total investment value in 2018.

Professor Hans Hendrischke, the co-author of the report, said that “large strategic investments in resources, energy, and infrastructure have given way to smaller investments and in projects that are tactical and directly linked to Chinese consumer market demand”.

“2018 need not define a trend of lower Chinese investment in Australia into the future but it is a moment to reflect upon”, Doug Ferguson, the Head of Asia & International Markets for KPMG Australia, stated, “there are a great many opportunities for Chinese companies to contribute towards the development and internationalization of Australian industries in the coming years.”

As the report suggests, Australian governments, corporations and professional advisers must continue to assist Chinese executives to better understand community attitudes around corporate social responsibility standards and ways to better integrate their company’s operations and brands in local economies and communities. 

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)(Web editor: Bianji, Hongyu)

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