China-ASEAN Monitor


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Economy, Investment and Trade

Cambodia to attract Chinese investors through agriculture conference
(21 June 2017) Over 1000 Chinese investors will attend the inaugural International Agriculture Products and Expository Conference in Cambodia to seek investment partnerships with Cambodian counterparts. Cambodia has a broad range of agricultural products and through this expo, more Chinese companies are expected to produce and process agricultural products in Cambodia to export to China and other regions. Vice President of Cambodia Chamber of Commerce Lim Heng said that the government has plans to develop and improve the agricultural sector by building a deep-sea port, lowering the electricity tax and developing airports for transportation.

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Philippines and China hold talks to address illicit trading
(21 June 2017) Philippines and China began informal discussions on strengthening cooperation against illegal trading through Manila’s Bureau of Customs (BOC) and Beijing’s Anti-Smuggling Bureau (ASB). Customs officials from both parties are expected to increase their efforts in sharing information and intelligence work focusing on anti-smuggling operations. The two countries also discussed strengthening and improving communication strategies.
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Indonesia offers Bali railway project to China
(15 June 2017) Indonesia has offered a railway project in Bali to Chinese investors. According to Indonesian Maritime Affairs Minister Luhut Pandjaitan, the railway will connect populated Denpasar to Gianyar and less populated, Singaraja. The railway construction is expected to start in 2018 and the project’s feasibility study has already been completed by Udaya University in cooperation with the World Bank.
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China manufacturers prefer to relocate facilities to ASEAN
(16 June 2017) A recently released report shows that Chinese manufacturers prefer to move their operations and production facilities to ASEAN countries rather than move further inland in China, as was previously done. This is due to increasing wages in the inland areas of China. The report noted that the termination of Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) has driven more Chinese companies to invest in ASEAN. The reasons oft cited are the region’s ample and cost-efficient labour supply, multiple trade pacts, regional stability, increasing wealth and rapid economic growth. Cambodia and Vietnam are the most favored destinations along with Myanmar and Indonesia, however, Malaysia is not preferred.
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ASEAN benefits from Belt and Road Initiative
(19 June 2017) China has been investing largely in the ASEAN region due to its Belt and Road Initiative which calls for massive development of trade routes in the region. According to a regional bank, China’s non-financial direct investment into Belt and Road countries increased to US$14.5 billion in 2016 up from US$12.5 billion in 2014. The region accounted for approximately 30 percent of total mergers and acquisitions investments in Belt and Road countries from 2005 to 2016 with Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia and Thailand being the largest recipients.
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