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PacNet #54 – Chinese Westward FDI: Take it or Lose/Skip it?

The Chinese are coming! Just as the summer winds down, announced Chinese acquisition in the US has reached $7.8 billion, approaching its all-time full-year record of $8.9 billion. Most recently, China National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC) agreed to pay $15.1 billion in cash to acquire Canada’s Nexen Inc, on the same day that Sinopec, another Chinese oil company, agreed to acquire a 49 percent stake in UK North Sea assets owned by Talisman Energy (another Canadian enterprise) for $1.5 billion. Regardless of whether these two deals are ultimately approved – the process that continues at this writing – the sheer volume and potential of Chinese foreign direct investment (FDI) will have a profound impact on the global economy, providing both enormous business potential and new challenges. The world, particularly the West (which is becoming increasingly attractive to Chinese investors) should welcome this trend, but governments must also develop strategies to take full advantage of the economic opportunities it presents.