China and Europe will substantially increase their bilateral investments despite a global economic slowdown, Shanghai Daily reported Friday, citing officials and economists. “China-Europe economic cooperation is increasingly diversified as Europe, which is already China’s largest trade partner, is becoming an important destination for Chinese enterprises seeking overseas expansion,” Foreign Deputy Minister Zhai Jun was quoted as saying at a forum on China-Europe partnership in Shanghai. Chinese enterprises invested US$10 billion in European countries in 2011, up from under US$1 billion annually before 2008, the report said. John Ross, senior fellow at Chongyang Institute for Financial Studies at Renmin University of China, said exports from China to Europe will grow moderately in the next few years due to the region’s weak economic situation, but there are opportunities for investments as the political and investment climate between the two economies remain favorable. Chinese investments in Europe will reach US$250 billion to US$500 billion by 2020, the report quoted Qi Mei, counselor at the Department of European Affairs of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, as saying.
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