As multinationals flock to China as a favorite
investment destination, an increasing number of Chinese firms are
also quickening their pace of going global. This is good news for
the crisis-stricken target countries and the sluggish world
economy. As they expand globally, Chinese companies can bring
much-needed capital and deliver a boost to business cooperation
between China and the rest of the world.
There is no need for the international
community to worry about China's growing outbound investments
because they are simply market-driven corporate behaviors. As China
deepens reform and opening up, more ambitious domestic companies
are seeking opportunities to build an international presence and
step on to the world stage.
While they look for greater returns outside
China, Chinese firms have also honored their social
responsibilities. For example, many Chinese companies have built
economic and trade cooperation zones in Africa and Latin America,
providing a better environment for Chinese investors to expand
their businesses and injecting fresh steam into the
industrialization of local economies. Chinese enterprises are also
helping to improve infrastructure in target nations, including
transport and telecom networks, urban drainage systems, schools and
hospitals. These efforts helped improve the lives of local
residents and laid a solid foundation for local economic growth.
Meanwhile, many Chinese firms have set up factories abroad, which
generate more jobs and tax revenues overseas.
As an open economy, China is beefing up both
investment inflows and outflows. That means the country is
harvesting fruits from continued opening-up policies and its
concerted efforts to achieve balanced growth. Undoubtedly, China is
rising to become a strong force in global outbound investments.
This comes as a powerful boost to the world economy, which is
sinking into a deep quagmire.
However, China's outbound investments remain
at an initial stage. Chinese companies still have a long way to go
to move up the global supply chains. In addition, they need to
learn lessons from past failed investments.
The path of going global will surely be a
bumpy road. Many Chinese firms are confronted with the daunting
challenge of global operations due to a lack of experience,
cultural differences and limited access to business information.
Worse still, many Chinese companies face restriction barriers when
they try to expand offshore.
In the post-crisis period, achieving global
economic recovery requires improvement in worldwide allocation of
natural resources, capital, technologies and labor. As they press
ahead with overseas investments, Chinese companies deserve respect
for their remarkable contributions to the restoration of the health
of world economy.