From left: Sha Zhu, vice president of Greater Washington China Investment Center (GWCIC), Jim Coleman, president and CEO of Prince George County's Economic Development Corporation, Zhao Zhenge, general representative of China Council for the Promotion of International Trade (CCPIT) USA, and Bill Black, president of GWCIC, at the Business Dialogues on Invest in America in Washington on Monday. (Dong Leshuo/China Daily)
Chinese direct investment in the U.S. has come a long way since the establishment of diplomatic relations between the two countries.
During the first 20 years after the establishment of Sino-U.S. diplomatic relations in 1979, Chinese investment in the U.S. was almost negligible compared to U.S. investment in China, according to Zhao Zhenge, general representative of the China Council of Promotion for International Trade (CPPIT) USA. "But in recent years, there has been considerable attention to a new wave of Chinese direct investment entering the United States."
Zhao spoke as Chinese delegates to the Sino-U.S. Joint Commission on Commerce and Trade (JCCT) gathered at the Business Dialogue on Investment in America conference on Monday in Washington.
"China is entering a new era emphasizing the role of foreign trade," Zhao said. "We hope to serve as a window or a platform to establish the business ties between the two countries."
CPPIT, along with the China Chamber of International Commerce and Greater Washington China Investment Center, hosted the conference to provide information about U.S. regulations, law enforcement, investment risks and offered a few case studies for potential investors to think through before putting their money into the U.S. market.
The aggregate Chinese investment in the U.S. bypassed the U.S. investment in China for the first time in 2013. By the end of 2015, Chinese investment reached .6 billion and created more than 100,000 jobs in the U.S., Zhao said.
"And according to the forecast, Chinese investment in the U.S. will exceed billion by the end of 2016," he said. "More and more Chinese companies are now looking forward to making investments here in the U.S., including the delegation we have here with us today."
Case studies of Tranlin Inc, known as Vastly in the U.S. market, and JD.com were presented during the second panel, themed Success Stories and Outlook.
Tranlin Inc, a paper-manufacturing company based in East China's Shandong province, broke ground on its first U.S. operation, a billion plant in Chesterfield County, Virginia, last year. The company plans to employ about 2,000 people by the end of 2020.
"We came up with our internationalization strategy after more than a half year's research and decided to make the U.S. our first overseas stop," said Jerry Peng, CEO of Vastly. "The logic is simple: The U.S. is the world's largest consumer market. It's a better choice in terms of both market size and profit margin."
The lower energy and land costs in the U.S. also appeal to Chinese investors, especially for a manufacturing company like Vastly, Peng said.