China Watch Blog has learnt that between China’s accession to the WTO and September this year, Guangzhou’s cumulative utilized foreign capital exceeded US$50 billion, and 217 Fortune 500 companies had invested in Guangzhou, the third largest number in mainland China after Shanghai and Beijing.
On November 2, at a press conference held at the municipal government information center, officials from the Guangzhou Bureau of Foreign Trade and Economic Cooperation reviewed the growth of Guangzhou’s development-style economy since China joined the WTO ten years ago and commented on the outlook of the economy, GDNews.com reported.
The bureau’s director, Xiao Zhenyu, stated that Guangzhou has made significant strides in attracting foreign investments since China’s accession to the WTO a decade ago. Xiao said that some people argue that Guangzhou has lagged farther behind the leader in foreign capital inflows, while the followers are quickly catching up.
He attributed this to the different methods used by the cities in computing foreign capital inflows, and stated that Guangzhou will intensify its efforts to lure foreign capital.
“Guangzhou accounts for 1/26 of China’s foreign capital inflows and 1/28 of the nation’s total imports and exports,” said Xiao. Since China joined the WTO ten years ago, Guangzhou’s foreign trade has increased by US$ 10 billion a year, surging from US$ 23.03 billion in 2001 to US$ 103.8 billion in 2010, averaging an annual growth of 18.2%.
In the first three quarters of the year, Guangzhou’s total imports and exports climbed 11.9% year-on-year to US$ 85.67 billion, and the figure for the whole year is expected to top US$ 110 billion.
The latest statistics released by the Guangzhou Bureau of Foreign Trade and Economic Cooperation show that the value of deals closed in the first and second phases of the Canton Fair rose 3.3% over the previous edition and 11.0% over the 108th edition to US$ 33.177 billion. The Guangzhou delegation secured deals valued at US$ 1.252 billion, an increase of 5.49% over the previous session and 12.98% over the 108th edition.
“Guangzhou has become a key node in the global investment network of multinational companies,” said Mr. Xiao. Since China’s accession to the WTO, Guangzhou’s investment environment has been further enhanced, and its appeal to Fortune 500 companies and the corporate headquarters of foreign invested enterprise has steadily risen. So far, 217 Fortune 500 companies have launched 563 projects in Guangzhou, involving a total investment of US$ 23.03 billion.
Xiao also indicated that his bureau will team up with the Guangzhou State-owned Assets Administration and Supervision Committee to foster one or two world-class enterprises on a par with Haier and Huawei. He said that the strongest candidates are the GAC Group and Yuexiu Group.