BEIJING, July 29 (Xinhua) -- Foreign direct investment (FDI) into the Chinese mainland registered double-digit growth in the first half of the year, indicating the world's second-largest economy remained attractive to global investors.
The FDI inflow, in actual use, increased 17.4 percent year on year to 723.31 billion yuan in the first six months, the Ministry of Commerce (MOC) said Friday. In U.S. dollar terms, the inflow went up 21.8 percent from a year ago to 112.35 billion dollars.
The encouraging figures came as China introduced a string of measures to ensure orderly operation of foreign-funded businesses amid COVID-19 resurgences since March.
MOC official Chen Chunjiang Friday told a press conference that the Chinese government has actively stabilized industrial and supply chains, responded to concerns of foreign businesses, and implemented preferential policies for them.
Market access for foreign investment has been further expanded, with foreign ownership caps scrapped for carmakers, Chen said.
The country's high-tech industries saw a rapid FDI increase of 33.6 percent in the first six months. Specifically, foreign investment in high-tech manufacturing rose 31.1 percent, while that in the high-tech service sector jumped 34.4 percent.
The service industry received 537.13 billion yuan (nearly 80 billion U.S. dollars) of foreign investment in the period, up 9.2 percent from a year earlier.
Analysts said China's appeal to foreign businesses stems from its resilient economy and huge markets.
Albeit global volatility and domestic epidemic resurgences, the country's gross domestic product amounted to 56 trillion yuan in the first six months, with industrial output close to 20 trillion yuan, fixed-asset investment topping 27 trillion yuan, and retail sales over 21 trillion yuan.
Multinationals enjoy sound growth prospects in China, Chen said, citing enormous opportunities in untapped potential of the country's over 400 million middle income group, a shorter negative list for foreign investment, and an ever-improving market-oriented, law-based and internationalized business environment.
"Despite the impact of COVID-19, we are still very confident about the Chinese market," Willie Tan, CEO of Skechers China, South Korea, and Southeast Asia, told Xinhua. "The Chinese market has hatched numerous new consumption scenarios, products, and services regarding the sports and health industry, allowing the segment to embark on a rapid rise."
Friday's data also showed the FDI flowing into the country's western region reported a 43.9 percent surge in the January-June period. A rise of 25 percent was seen in the central region, and 15.6 percent in the eastern region. ■