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February 12, 2018

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New areas listed for ‘sensitive’ investment

CHINA’S state planner included news media and weapons development in its list of “sensitive” sectors for offshore investment yesterday, meaning any deals in those areas could face greater scrutiny.

Development of cross-border water resources also was listed as a “sensitive” sector, confirming draft changes to the guidelines first issued in November.

Those guidelines for the first time treated outbound investment by Chinese individuals in the same way as such investments by companies.

They also require domestic firms making outbound investments of over US$300 million to seek approval from the planner, the National Development and Reform Commission.

The list maintained restrictions on offshore investments in real estate, hotels, motion picture studios and sports clubs.

NDRC also deleted some sectors from the list. For investment in overseas projects of telecoms operation, massive land development, and electric mains and power grids, official approval is no longer necessary.

China’s non-financial outbound direct investment in 2017 fell 29.4 percent year on year to US$120.08 billion, as the government mounted a campaign against what it called “irrational” outbound investment.

The NDRC list will come into effect from March 1, the notice said.


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