Investment by Chinese companies here has surged more than 200pc over the past year, amid trade tensions between Beijing and Washington, while Irish companies are seeking a greater foothold in the world’s fastest-growing major economy.
According to analysis from consultants Baker McKenzie and Rhodium Group, completed Chinese investment here hit $100m (€87m) in 2018.
The rise is partly down to the announcement by WuXi Biologics that it would invest €325m over four years, Baker McKenzie said.
The surge in investment here came amid sharp falls elsewhere, as trade tensions between the United States and China ratcheted up thanks to tariffs on billions of dollars of imports from China, as well as new restrictions on investment.
Overall, completed Chinese investment into Europe and North America fell to just $30bn last year, down from $111bn in 2017.
Some countries in Europe have also started to impose greater scrutiny on Chinese deals, fearing that investment in some sectors is being made to win access to technologies that China will then use to bolster its domestic industries at the expense of companies in the EU.
Irish companies have also embarked on a push to win markets in China with the Dublin Chamber leading a delegation of 20 companies to Hong Kong in a five-day mission that started at the weekend.
“Huge opportunities exist in Hong Kong for Irish firms, especially as the country also provides a gateway into the increasingly lucrative Chinese market,” said Dublin Chamber CEO Mary Rose Burke.
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