FDI

MNCs in the News-2020-02-21

China’s Ministry of Commerce reports that inward foreign direct investment (FDI) in January reflected a small increase over the same period last year, with South Korea’s inward FDI (IFDI) surging and IFDI in medical equipment and instrumentation showing strong increases. Foreign businesses seem attracted by the Greater Bay Area’s promise of market opportunities and ongoing market liberalization, though policy, legal, and regulatory barriers still deter/concern some. The coronavirus’s adverse effect on the movement of goods within and outside China has affected some Belt and Road Initiative projects. Chinese contractors in Indonesia reject foreign media reports coronavirus has had a significant adverse impact on the Jakarta-Bandung high-speed rail project. Japan issues new rules relating to FDI screening in the wake of the passage of its Foreign Exchange and Foreign Trade Act. Japan’s Shimizu and Indonesian state-owned enterprise form joint venture to extend Jakarta’s mass transit system. Korea’s LG Chem wins default judgement from United States (US) International Trade Commission regarding its lawsuit against SK Innovation for violating its electric vehicle rechargeable battery trade secrets. Korea’s Samsung faces Iranian retaliation for restricting Galaxy stores app services to Iranian users.

MNCs in the News-2020-02-14

JPMorgan (China) intends to assume full ownership of all its mainland China operations by 2021 to take advantage of China’s financial sector opening. Chinese regulators approve United States (US) credit card firm Mastercard Inc.’s application to establish a bankcard clearing house joint venture. Peter Navarro urges the US to reduce its reliance on Chinese pharmaceutical and medical supplies. New US regulations expanding the authority of the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) with respect to the review of foreign direct investment (FDI) have gone into effect, with notable implications for Chinese FDI in the US. Coronavirus impact on supply chains and production in China accelerates move already occurring because of US-China trade war and rising labor costs in China. Japan is excluded from list of countries exempted from new CFIUS review ambit, but this may change. Merger of Korean shipbuilding giants potentially affected by Japanese filing of World Trade Organization petition, charging illegal subsidies. Korea’s SK Engineering & Construction wins mega-deal to build a beltway in Kazakhstan.

Executive Director Jean-Marc F. Blanchard interviewed for Frankfurter Allgemeine story on the China-United States Phase I Trade deal

Dr. Jean-Marc F. Blanchard, Executive Director of the Mr. & Mrs. S.H. Wong Center for the Study of Multinational Corporations, was interviewed for a Frankfurter Allgemeine, Germany’s equivalent of the Wall Street Journal, article published in the wake of the conclusion of the Phase I Trade deal between China and the United States (US) in mid-Januaruy. This wide-ranging piece asked why the deal was struck, which side won, and what is the likely direction of the China-US relationship going forward. Dr.

MNCs in the News-2020-02-07

China’s Ministry of Commerce pushes Chinese Chambers of Commerce to provide force majeure certificates to Chinese firms struggling to meet their contractual obligations due to disruptions caused by the coronavirus crisis. Wuhan Institute of Virology move to apply for a patent to use United States (US) firm Gilead’s remdesivir to treat pneumonia like symptoms raises intellectual property issues. Huawei’s Chief Representative to European Union (EU) institutions says the firm will build 5G manufacturing bases in Europe. US Attorney General Bill Barr advocates US and its allies taking controlling stakes in Nokia, Ericsson, or both to fend off Huawei 5G challenge. Japan’s Ministry of Defense reveals two new Japanese defense-related companies that suffered cyberattacks, without stating if classified information was leaked. Japanese company plans to cope with Brexit subject to change depending upon trade negotiations between the United Kingdom (UK) and the EU. Japan files petition with the World Trade Organization to challenge planned merger between Hyundai Heavy Industries and Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering. Panama re-awards Metro Line 3 to Korean consortium, rejecting challenges from Chinese firms and a consortium with a Chinese company.

MNCS in the News-2020-01-31

The coronavirus is affecting the operations of numerous multinational corporations (MNCs) in China, though many remain hopeful about the longer-term and are not overreacting. The former Chairman of China’s Sinopec opined that Chinese foreign direct investment (FDI) in sensitive areas and big deals would be avoided due to the contemporary political environment. Chinese firms win railway tenders in Namibia, where they already have a noteworthy presence. Japanese Diet bill proposes requiring major technology firms, foreign and domestic, to report annually to Japanese authorities on practices like data collection and also to establish complaint procedures. Due to the coronavirus, Toyota Motors suspends operations in China pending further review. South Korea seeks to create a better environment for domestic and foreign startups to promote growth. South Korean FDI in the US hits USD $10 billion for the fourth consecutive as relatively higher growth rates and lower taxes prove attractive.

Dr. Jean-Marc F. Blanchard's picture

The Phase I Trade Deal and FDI, Part I-Financial Services

Previously, I expressed mild skepticism and then later guarded optimism about China’s financial sector opening. The recent United States-China Phase One trade deal suggests the situation may be even better than originally thought with one entire chapter of the agreement speaking to the sector’s opening.

MNCs in the News-2020-01-17

China’s tax system has been improving and there are hopes this will boost inward foreign direct investment (FDI). Goldman Sachs contemplates major expansion of employees in mainland China if China’s financial sector opening continues and it can take full ownership of its securities joint venture (JV). JPMorgan moves to increase its ownership of its fund management business in China because of China’s financial sector opening and the attractive opportunities present in the sector. United States (US) pressures on the United Kingdom (UK) to shun Huawei’s presence in its 5G telecommunications system lead UK Prime Minister to query what are the alternatives. Lawsuit by various US states threatens to upend merger of Sprint, in which Japan’s Softbank has a huge stake, and T-Mobile. Softbank proposes huge investment in Indonesia’s planned move of its capital from Jakarta. Korea’s Fair Trade Commission action forces Netflix to revise some clauses in its customer agreements. Korea’s Samsung acquires TeleWorld Solutions, a US-based telecom firm, which may open 5G opportunities in the US.

MNCs in the News-2020-01-10

China Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission (CBIRC) makes it yet easier for foreign banks to set up and expand in China. China’s Ministry of Resources moves to lubricate the way for greater foreign direct investment (FDI) in energy exploration and extraction in China. Chinese outward FDI in North America and Europe plummeted in 2019 for multiple reasons. China ranked as Cambodia’s largest source of FDI in 2019. Japan’s Financial Service Agency (FSA) is preparing a guidebook on the registration process for investment management, investment advisory, and related businesses to boost Tokyo’s status as a financial capital. Iranian action against United States (US) troops in Iraq led various Japan companies to send staff out of Iran and limit travel to Iran and/or Iraq. Korea’s inward FDI in 2019 dropped notably versus the highs of 2018, though the second half of 2019 was relatively promising versus the 1st half. Korean construction firms have gone on high alert due to the tensions in the Middle East and the Korean government is mobilized to help such businesses.

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Europe Facing Disconnection Disaster over Huawei and Curbs on Chinese Companies?

European countries like Germany, the United Kingdom, and Norway have been struggling over the extent to which they should use equipment and services and accept foreign direct investment (FDI) from Chinese telecommunication firms.

MNCs in the News-2019-12-13

UIBE Institute of International Economy 2019 Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) report recommends China do more to enhance the business environment for FDI such as allowing the market to play a greater role in the allocation of resources. Chinese government orders all government offices and public institutions to remove foreign computer hardware and software by 2022. United States (US) National Defense Authorization Act bans use of federal funds to purchase buses and passenger cars made by Chinese manufacturers, which will hurt BYD’s US operations. Pakistan established new China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) authority to expedite the progress of the initiative. Labor Union at Uber Eats Tokyo cannot stomach the latter’s unilateral decision to lower the base pay of workers. Australian Competition and Consumer Commission suggests too early for Asahi Group to toast its plan to buy Anheuser-Busch InBev’s local Australia operations. South Korea’s reported inward FDI (IFDI) tops USD $20 billion for the fifth consecutive year, though realized IFDI often falls far short of reported figures. Korean consortium HPH Joint Venture may lose multi-billion bid to build metro in Panama due to reported Chinese pressures for a review of the bid award.

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