MNCs in the News*

May 29th, 2016
At the 8th Strategic and Economic Dialogue talks, the US will press China to improve its business and investment climate. China say it will propose a global investment code at the upcoming G20 summit in Hangzhou. Tsinghua Unigroup’s leadership is unconcerned about the possibilities the new Taiwan leadership may review two of its investments in Taiwanese testing and packaging chip companies. Chinese bidding consortium goes to Malaysia to tout its advantages for the Singapore-Malaysia high-speed rail project. Indian Finance Minister plans to pursue vigorous implementation of a Japan high-speed rail project linking Ahmedabad and Mumbai when he visits Japan at the end of this month. Japanese firms want the United Kingdom to remain in the European Union. South Korean cooperation with Saudi Arabia and Kuwait leads to accelerate of SK Gas Ltd.’s liquid petroleum gas-based gas chemistry business. Frustrated with a stalled legal case, Korea Electric Power Corporation (KEPCO) has decided to pull out of a major Nigerian oil exploration and development project. Indonesia is working hard to finalize all the regulations (new and revised) in its 12 economic policy packages. Global rating agencies seem to like Indonesia’s investment quality. Thailand is pushing Food Innopolis, a food cluster designed to enhance the value of the country’s crops. Vietnam’s inward FDI for the first five months of 2016 grows strongly over the comparable period in 2015. Foreign investors can enter the theater industry in Vietnam.
May 24th, 2016
Chinese committee has been examining technology products (hardware, software, and other) sold by by big foreign companies for security risks. Apple CEO Tim Cook meets with Chinese officials in an additional effort to curry government favor. Beijing Automotive Industry Holding Co. has big globalization plans which include working with foreign government partners. Nissan faces South Korea fines and mandatory recall as well as consumer lawsuits over so-called emissions defeat device. South Korean CJ Group senior managers meet with top level Indonesian delegation to discuss cooperation. At forum in Seoul, Indonesian president welcomes more Korean investment and emphasizes his government’s progress in creating a better investment environment. Indonesian Energy and Mineral Resources Minister Sudirman Said meets with US companies to tout investment opportunities in the energy sector. Thailand and China continue negotiations to settle on cost estimates for the Bangkok-Nakhon Ratchasima high-speed rail project. Uber Technologies press Thai officials to legalize its services. Singaporean investors continue to remain important to Vietnam. Vietnam’s State Capital Investment Corporation and the Russian Direct Investment Fund sign MoU to establish a Russian-Vietnamese investment platform.
May 16th, 2016
Inward FDI into China between January and April rises almost 5 percent over the same period last year. Chinese Premier Li Keqiang touts China’s plan to take measures to encourage greater inward foreign direct investment. China is investigating foreign and domestic drug firms for possible violations of competition laws and regulations. Foreign pharmaceutical firms in China take action to offset profit pressures flowing from government actions. Apple invests $1 billion in Didi Chuxing, following various adverse actions against it in China. Beijing Municipal Court denies Zhujiang Beverage the ability to use the Facebook name on its products. China outward deals in 2016 to date already have topped the figures for 2015. Some Chinese state-owned enterprises are adopting the sovereign immunity defense to escape legal liability in the U.S. SK Group explores cooperation possibilities with Kuwaiti government and businesses officials visiting Seoul. Using investor state dispute measures Hanocal Holdings is suing the Korean government for compensation over excess taxes. Indonesian President urges his Cabinet to do more to improve the ease of doing business and to garner an investment grade rating from Standard & Poor’s. Indonesian Investment Coordinating Board Chairman Franky Sibarani touts his country’s reforms at the HSBC Economic Outlook 2016 conference. Indonesia President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo meets with Chinese State Council Yang Jiechi to discuss investment and trade cooperation. Vietnam calls on foreign firms to contribute more to Vietnam’s economic development.
May 8th, 2016
China’s State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film, and Television forces Apple to close its IBooks Store and Itunes Movies stores. Beijing Municipal High People’s Court decision allows Xintong Tiandi Technology to continue selling leather goods with the name “IPHONE.” Dongfeng and its joint venture partner Nissan have to undertake a recall on Infiniti models built in China and imported. Australia has a beef with Chinese investors plans to purchase massive cattle farmlands. Japan says “UK don’t go home” during Abe’s visit with Cameron. South Korea and Iran “energize” their cooperation with billions in infrastructure and other kinds of deals. Saudi Arabia’s financial woes create significant difficulties for the continuation of Saudi Arabia’s stock exchange. Indonesia experiences first quarter-to-quarter decline in FDI. Thai government has aspirations that the ITU Telecom World Forum will lead to progress in attracting technology related investment into the country. Japan International Cooperation Agency asks for rights to develop land along its railway projects. Thailand asks Japan to speed up its investment activities in high-speed and double-track rail. FDI continues to pour into Vietnam. Infrastructure development companies are industrious in building industrial zones.
April 23rd, 2016
China’s Ministry of Commerce underscores reasons to be optimistic about inward foreign direct investment flows into China. China experiences a massive creation of foreign-funded enterprises between 2011 and 2015. China’s National Development and Reform Commission will test a “negative list” approach in Fujian, Guangdong, Shanghai, and Tianjin. The American Chamber of Commerce in China expresses concern about China’s policies and what it sees as a lack of serious commitment to reform. In testimony before Congress, Apple denies that it had provided iPhone source code to China. Chinese anti-trust investigators now seem to be turning their attention to Korean firms after targeting German and Japanese firms. China’s Chinese outward foreign direct investment (COFDI) and M&A deals show significant growth in the first quarter of 2016. EY forecasts strong Chinese outward FDI growth averaging 10 percent partly because of the One Belt, One Road program. South Korea’s Fair Trade Commission reports it succeeded in getting Apple to revise the problematic Authorized Service Agreement it had concluded with six Korean repair service providers. Government data indicates the Korea-China Free Trade Agreement is stimulating COFDI into Korea. Indonesia’s President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo will visit four European countries to promote European investment in Indonesia. Denmark concludes Memorandum of Understanding with Indonesia involving capital and technology in exchange for land. Experts call for Vietnam to be more selective in granting tax incentives to foreign investors and encourage it to strengthen its FDI management capabilities. Myanmar grants a license to Vietnam’s military-run Telecommunications Group (Viettel) to build a multi-billion dollar telecommunications network.
April 12th, 2016
China fails to submit new negative list proposal to US. Chinese firms are pouring money overseas driven by a depreciating currency among other factors. The Washington Post calls for a new approach to Chinese outward foreign direct investment (FDI) that takes into account non-traditional risks. ZTE replaces three top executives in reaction to US sanctions and warns of possible further penalties. China’s Beijing Urban Construction Group wins bid to build a US $300 million international cargo hub and airport in Bolivia. Korea Electric Power Corp. wins its first overseas solar power plant contract. Indonesia’s Investment Coordinating Board warns it will annul the investment permits of foreign companies that are avoiding their tax obligations. Indonesia and France work to expand the possibilities for French infrastructure investment in Indonesia. Thailand’s United Power of Asia Plc has signed an agreement with Myanmar’s state utility to construct a gas-fired power plant in the Dawei special economic zone. Russia and the US are competing for investment opportunities in Vietnam. Vietnam moves to increase its harvest of investment, especially FDI, in the agricultural area. Vietnamese representatives court investors from the Chinese mainland, Hong Kong, and Macao at a seminar in Hong Kong.
April 3rd, 2016
Chinese Premier Li Keqiang emphasizes China’s willingness to work harder to create a favorable environment for foreign investors. China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology stresses that the country’s planned rules on Internet domain names will not affect companies’ “normal operations.” China will set up its first overseas permanent military base in Djibouti. China’s Railway Rolling Stock Corp. aims to win large amounts of business in the developed world. In the face of US Senatorial concerns, Syngenta AG insists a China National Chemical Corp. takeover would not raise security issues. Japan may finance a multi-billion dollar deep-sea port project in Patimban, Indonesia. JR Tokai and its American partner Texas Central Partners (TCP) are going to ask the US Federal Railroad Administration to set new rules allowing an ultrahigh-speed to be built to Japanese bullet train specifications. Mercedes-Benz Korea not rolling along as far as the Korean government is concerned. The Korea Trade-Investment Promotion probes if Korean companies should relocate from the shuttered Kaesong Industrial Complex to Vietnam. Korean businesses and association, in collaboration with the government, will establish a public-private consultative council to boost overseas Korean construction business. Thai Democrats challenge financing model for Bangkok to Nakhon Ratchasima high-speed train line. Vietnamese inward foreign direct investment for the first quarter of 2016 surges over the comparable period a year earlier.
March 29th, 2016
China announces a recall affecting BMW Mini Coopers. Chinese M&A and outward M&A deal values hit record amounts for the year to date. Leading Chinese brands are earning an increasing amount of their revenues from overseas. China Railway Group Limited to invest billions of dollars in an integrated office complex in Kuala Lumpur and will set up its regional headquarters there. China’s Railway No. 3 Engineering Group and SinoFortone Group conclude MOU with Scotland that has the potential for US $14 billion in infrastructure projects. Japan’s Inpex multibillion dollar LNG project in Indonesia may undergo a dramatic transformation due to a Presidential decision to move the project onshore. Korean prosecutors raid Volkswagen’s vehicle inspection center to probe emissions equipment on the German’s company’s new cars. Korea’s GS Engineering and Construction wins US $1.26 billion contract for world’s largest rolling stock and bus base in Singapore. A Korean consortium including Daewoo Engineering and Construction and Hanwha Engineering Construction have won a $18-20 billion housing project in Saudi Arabia. Korean firms will invest in Russian Far East for “fishy reasons.” At the BOAO Forum for Asia, Indonesia Vice President Jusuf Kalla says his country needs to improve its regulatory efficiency. Indonesia aims to secure a 30 percent increase in FDI from China in 2016. Thai Deputy Prime Minister courts South Korean investment. Vietnam grants Samsung Electronics Vietnam permission to establish a USD $300 million research and development project in Hanoi.
March 21st, 2016
Chinese Ministry of Commerce spokesman voices confidence China will remain attractive to foreign investors and promises new efforts. China’s State Power Investment Corp. buys Taralga Wind Farm project for nearly $230 million. Former Turkish energy minister expects China to bid aggressively during the bidding process for Turkey’s third nuclear power plant. China’s Three Gorges International Corp. will bid on Brazil’s Tapajos hydroelectric dam project. Japan’s Toshiba reveals that US Justice Department and US Securities and Exchange Commission are investigating the accounting practices of its US units. Political infighting in Indonesia results in postponement of major oil bloc development by Japan’s Inpex. Japanese firm partners with government controlled Indian private venture on major wind power project across seven Indian states. Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ will become the first Japanese lender to provide Islamic compliant financing through an overseas branch. Influx of Japanese businesses into Myanmar’s Thilawa special economic zone drives drives Myanmar’s CB Bank to open a branch there. Korea Electric Power Corporation (KEPCO) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Ecuador linked to its plans to build EV charging infrastructure operation systems in the country. The Korea Rural Community Corporation is expected to secure a government of Gujarat (India) contract for the construction of the Kalpasar sea wall project. Indonesia aims to bring more European investment into the country. The President of the European Association for Business and Commerce called upon the Thai government to embrace a number of changes in order to draw more investment.
March 17th, 2016
China’s Ministry of Commerce (MOFCOM) reports that foreign direct investment flows into China topped USD $22.5 billion in the first two months of 2016. Bristol-Myers Squibb moves to deal with fallout of US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Foreign Corrupt Practices Act settlement relating to its China joint venture. Chrysler to recall nearly 21,000 vehicles in China that have an oil pipe defect. Chinese outward foreign direct investment (COFDI) soars YOY with smaller and private enterprises becoming more important proportionally. Statistics for 2015 show strength of COFDI in Europe. China sees room for more COFDI in Russian agriculture as well as agricultural cooperation. Some believe COFDI in the US has the potential to influence voting patterns in some localities. Chicago Transit Authority awards CSR Sifang America a USD $1.3 billion railcar supply order. Mitsubishi partners with Korean firm on government awarded coal-fired power plant project in Vietnam. Foreign businesses in Korea voice concern about the discretionary legal and regulatory environment and call for greater stability. Korea Trade-Investment Promotion Agency has concluded a Memorandum of Understanding with Italy’s SIMEST that will facilitate more Italian investment in Korea. Korea and Egypt expand their bilateral cooperation increase infrastructure and cooperation opportunities for Korean firms in Egypt. The liberalization of Indonesia’s cinema sector draws increases foreign investor interest in cinema screen construction in the country. The Thai Business Development Department (TBDD) and Franchise License Association (FLA) will cooperate to assist franchise business operators conduct business in ASEAN countries, China, and Japan. State Railway of Thailand (SRT) governor welcomes foreign construction companies to participate in government investment projects provided they find a Thai partner and obey Thai rules and regulations.

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