CX Daily: China's State Owns Equivalent of Almost 80% of 2018 Global GDP
China reports $67 trillion book of state assets
The total assets on the books of the Chinese government at the end of last year came to 474.7 trillion yuan ($67 trillion), equivalent to almost 80% of global GDP for 2018.
That’s according to a report submitted by the State Council, its second annual review of the condition of state assets to the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress. China’s cabinet made the first such accounting last year as the government pledged to improve transparency on state asset management.
State assets generated healthy returns, according to the report. Assets of China’s nonfinancial SOEs grew 14.7% from a year earlier to 210.4 trillion yuan as of the end of 2018. State-owned financial enterprises’ assets gained 9.7% to 264.3 trillion yuan, according to the cabinet report.
FINANCE & ECONOMICS
The new law aims to level the playing field by treating both foreign and domestic businesses equally. Photo: Bloomberg
Foreign investment /
China’s new investment law a positive step, foreign firms say
China’s forthcoming law governing foreign investment addresses core concerns of companies operating in the country, such as by pledging greater recourse in IP violations, allowing foreign companies to interact with local governments and participate in the drafting of standards and government procurement, and forbidding government officials from requiring tech transfers, the U.S.-China Business Council said.
“However, the draft falls short of specifying the types of disclosures of trade secrets that will be prohibited and clarifying the types of administrative organs to which the provisions on technology transfer apply,” U.S.-China Business Council Vice President Jake Parker said.
Huawei’s first on-shore bonds generate heated demand
Huawei Technologies’ first 6 billion yuan ($850 million) of domestic bond sales received an enthusiastic response from investors. The Chinese telecom equipment giant Wednesday completed the bond offering at a coupon rate of 3.48%, with a three-fold oversubscription. The coupon rate was in line with market expectation, equivalent to rates for large state-owned issuers, a bond investment manager told us.
It was the first time for Huawei to tap the on-shore bond market and its first issuance since March 2017. Previously, the company issued four dollar-based bonds and two yuan-dominated bonds in Hong Kong through subsidiaries.
China expands visa-free transit policy to spur tourism
China is expanding its 144-hour visa-free transit policy to three additional ports of entry starting Dec. 1, the National Immigration Administration said at a press conference Wednesday. After the change, eligible foreign visitors who arrive at any of 27 ports of entry will be able to stay in the country without a visa for up to 144 hours.
Real estate /
More property developers cut prices to raise cash as demand flags
More property developers in China are cutting prices on new homes to boost sales and raise cash amid flagging demand and a tougher environment for debt refinancing.
Sunac China Holdings Ltd., the country’s fourth-biggest real-estate group in terms of sales, has reduced prices for properties in a development in Tianjin by 30% in the past two months, according to one homeowner who bought his apartment in September. Other developers including China Evergrande Group, China Vanke Co. Ltd. and Country Garden Holdings Co. Ltd. are also offering big discounts in some cities to clear unsold stock.
Quick hits /
China plans first Euro bond sale since 2004 on cheap rates
Opinion: Delisting Chinese companies would only hurt the U.S.
BUSINESS & TECH
Xiaoxing Xi, a Chinese-born American physicist. Photo: VCG
Physics prize awarded to Chinese-born U.S. professor wrongly accused of espionage
Chinese-born American physicist Xiaoxing Xi was awarded the American Physical Society’s Andrei Sakharov Prize Tuesday for “steadfast advocacy in support of the U.S. scientific community and open scientific exchange.”
In 2015, Xi, a professor and then chair of the physics department at Temple University in Philadelphia, was arrested on espionage charges. In an embarrassing mix-up, prosecutors mistook the blueprint they had accused Xi of illegally sharing with Chinese scientists. The case was dropped the same year, but Xi is now suing the lead FBI agent on his case. Xi lost his position as department chair and several grants, and his family was pushed to the brink of financial ruin because of high legal fees.
China leapfrogs France for ease of doing business
China leapfrogged France in the World Bank’s annual rankings for ease of doing business, a shift that underscores the broader trend of developing economies catching up with their more advanced peers.
China catapulted in the rankings from 46 last year to 31, just ahead of France, which was unchanged at 32, according to the report. New Zealand kept the top spot and Singapore held No. 2. Hong Kong moved up a notch to third, trading places with Denmark, while South Korea stayed in fifth. The U.S. moved up two spots to No. 6, knocking Georgia back to seventh, while the U.K., Norway and Sweden rounded out the top 10.
State-owned oil giant gets new chairman
Wang Dongjin, vice chairman of one of China’s three state-owned oil giants, is being promoted to chairman, filling a position that remained vacant for nearly two months.
China National Offshore Oil Corp. announced the news Thursday afternoon. Wang is to replace Yang Hua, who resigned as CNOOC’s chairman in early September when he was made chairman o0f another state-owned giant, chemical manufacturer Sinochem Group.
Quick hits /
Chinese pharma moguls gift 24-year-old son $3.8 billion in share capital
Shenzhen-listed smartphone-component maker bailed out by city government
Huawei to start sales of $2,400 foldable phone next month
China drafts cyber regulations to revise laws protecting minors
Investors line up for dry skin specialist’s share sale
Singer-songwriter steps down as Alibaba Music chairman
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