A five-year plan to encourage foreign investment is paying dividends for Western Australia’s Chinese sister state Zhejiang Province, with more than ¥500 billion ($99.6 billion) of offshore investment occurring since early 2013.
In early 2013, the Zhejiang provincial government set a target to deploy ¥500 billion in foreign capital within five years in an effort to facilitate economic reform in line with key points underlined at the 18th Party Congress.
Over that time, the use of foreign capital increased by 7.7 per cent each year, while the target of ¥500 billion was reached several months early, according to the Zhejiang Provincial Department of Commerce.
“In the past five years, the province has deepened the reform of foreign investment system, strengthened foreign investment promotion, strengthened investment promotion platform construction, fostered the introduction of new advantages of foreign investment, attracted favourable investors, and optimized services to achieve remarkable results,” an official from the Provincial Department of Commerce told reporters.
Last year, foreign investors funded 442 individual projects worth more than $US30 million ($39.6 million) each in Zhejiang Province, as well as 100 projects valued at more than $US100 million ($132.2 million) each.
Zhejiang is now ranked fourth across all Chinese provinces in terms of attracting foreign investment.
The milestone is the latest achievement in the 30th year of Zhejiang Province’s sister state relationship with WA, which was formalised in November 1987.
Premier Mark McGowan and Asian Engagement Minister Bill Johnston met with Zhejiang Governor Yuan Jiajun earlier this month, ratifying plans to expand the relationship further.
Mr McGowan said he expected further collaboration between WA and Zhejiang in areas such as science, technology, e-commerce and small business in coming years.
Education is also expected to remain at the forefront of the sister state relationship.