PARIS - European businesses are on the hunt for Chinese investment money, according to a new study by financial group AMO. The study, which surveyed 71 large multinationals across 12 countries, shows that continental Europeans are actively pursuing Chinese investors, whereas the British are still focusing on the U.S. As for the Americans, there remains a deep-seated reluctance to get their funding from Chinese investment funds.
This breakdown is in line with the evolution of Chinese investment around the world: Europe has become Chinas preferred destination for mergers and acquisitions. German and French companies are the most proactive, and have already secured a significant amount of Chinese institutional funding, whereas Italy, Spain and Scandinavia still have far fewer Chinese shareholders.
In the UK and the U.S., the dominant view is that Chinese investors, although hands-off, are still perceived as lacking transparency. Nicholas R. Lardy, a researcher at the Peterson Institute for International Economics believes the Americans are still being cautious for the wrong political reasons. Apart from the mining industry, which is determined to take advantage of the interest it generates, the U.S has pursued little or no Chinese investments at all. Only a third of the managers interviewed by AMO said they were thinking about financing opportunities from China.
The study also provides an interesting overview of the investment strategies in China. For now, they seem to want to remain discrete, with very few companies surveyed reporting any investment above 5%.
*Newsbites are digest items, not direct translations.
Read the full article in Les Echos in French.
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