China rolls out ‘charm offensive’ for foreign investors

  • Foreign CEOs have taken a “cautious” approach and are awaiting “real action”, despite China’s fresh promise of a better business environment and its determination to keep overseas investors onshore at a recently concluded high-level business forum.
  • The China Development Forum, the first in-person conference with foreign executives since borders reopened in Jan 23, was attended by an audience made up of 69 foreign CEOs, and 20 other guests from academia and international organisations – many of whom were setting foot on Chinese soil for the first time in three years.
  • While their presence is a vote of confidence in the Chinese market, there are concerns about whether the country can honour its pledges and the evolving geopolitical situation, according to the foreign business community.
  • Beijing’s red carpet welcome for foreign investors comes as the world’s second largest economy faces a range of headwinds, including an stubbornly high youth unemployment rate, a domestic economic slowdown, aggressive US interest rate increases and market disturbances triggered by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

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