Thierry Apoteker
  • This paper reviews and analyses Chinese outward foreign direct investments (FDI) in the Greater Europe Zone (GEZ).
  • The analysis is structured in three sections. First, there is a quantitative review and analysis of trends and time patterns of China’s overseas investment in the GEZ. That is followed by an analysis of the strategies of and challenges to Chinese multinational companies in the GEZ. The final section addresses China's specific policy for the GEZ and the GEZ states' response, particularly in terms of regulatory environment. 
Policy Implications
  • Chinese investments in the GEZ have a clear focus on energy and commodity-related industries. The GEZ is a major supplier of energy to the EU. GEZ countries, Russia and Kazakhstan in particular, clearly intend to use the implicit strategic resource competition between the EU and China to their advantage. The very large investments made by Chinese companies and their connection with explicit policy objectives (and policy-related financial resources) mean that the EU risks being left behind in this long-term competition.
  • There is scant evidence of a Chinese EU market penetration strategy that uses the GEZ countries as a production platform for exporting into the EU. Most of the non-commodity-related investments by China in the GEZ are in Russia and to a lesser extent Turkey, and such operations target primarily those domestic markets.
This paper forms part of the ECRAN project's publication series. ECRAN is a three-year project funded by the European Union to provide advice on China to European policy makers. More about ECRAN.