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Special> Global Financial Crisis> Latest
UPDATED: March 23, 2009
China's Investment Policy Not Changed: Official
It would be wrong to assume China didn't welcome foreign investment, said Commerce Minister Chen Deming

Commerce Minister Chen Deming said on Sunday that it would be wrong to assume China didn't welcome foreign investment based on the country's disapproval of Coca-Cola's proposal to acquire China Huiyuan Juice Group.

Chen made the remarks at the China Development Forum 2009 held in Beijing.

The attempted acquisition took place between two foreign companies and didn't involve the country's policy on investment. The rejection was based on concerns over whether or not these two companies' sales in China would cause a monopoly, according to Chen.

Huiyuan is a firm registered in Cayman Islands located in the Caribbean region.

The Ministry of Commerce (MOC) announced on Wednesday that Coca-Cola's bid to acquire Huiyuan failed to meet requirements set out in the anti-monopoly law.

The MOC has approved many foreign applications for acquisition in China since the country's anti-monopoly law took effect last year, such as American Johnson & Johnson's purchase of Beijing Dabao Cosmetics, Chen said.

Of the total 40 anti-trust applications from companies under the ministry's investigation since August 2008, 24 mergers and acquisitions have received approval so far, according to the MOC.

Chen said China would continue to actively use foreign investment and fight against emerging protectionism in action.

The country would continue to guide more foreign investment in high-tech, energy saving and green industries as well as the service sector, and introduction of more investment to the less developed central and western regions, according to Chen.

"China has always adhered to the principle of keeping open in times of crisis," said Chen, adding the country will further open up and help with world economy recovery while realizing self development.

Statistics showed the nation imported goods valued at $1.13 trillion last year, up 18.5 percent from a year earlier at a time when global trade contracted.

"China would continue to expand import in 2009 and actively organize company procurement delegations to purchase equipment, goods and technologies abroad,"

(Xinhua News Agency March 22, 2009)

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