Dream islands: Chinese capital poured into Greece.
The economic boom in China is the result of the rapid growth of industrial production and exports, which began in the late 1990s and continues to this day. Over the past 20 years, China's GDP has grown almost 13 times.
The rise in the economy ensured a proportional increase in incomes. As a result - an increase in the middle and upper classes. According to the World Bank, from 2000 to 2016, the average annual per capita income in China increased eightfold from $ 790 in current prices to $ 6,100.
According to a joint study by Bain & Co. and China Merchants Bank, in 2006, the number of people in the country whose savings exceeded $ 1.5 million (HNWI) was about 180,000 people, and by 2016 it had grown to 1.6 million in a decade the number of wealthy Chinese has increased eight-fold. At the same time, the number of super-rich people (UHNWI), whose wealth is estimated at more than $ 15 million, grew even more rapidly: if in 2006 there were about 7,000 people, then at the beginning of 2016 - 116,000. Together, rich Chinese manage a fortune of $ 24 trillion .
Flight of capital.
According to Bain & amp; Co, if in 2011 only a small part of wealthy citizens invested in assets abroad (19%), then in 2017 their number increased to 56%. The volume of China's direct investment in foreign assets over the past 10 years has grown 47 times from $ 4.6 billion in 2006 to $ 217.2 billion in 2016.
According to the American Enterprise Institute and Heritage Foundation, the most popular country for Chinese investment is the US: between 2005 and 2016 the country received about $ 149.7 billion from the citizens of China. Overall, the geography of China's investments is vast and not tied to a specific continent: the second The volume of foreign investment is Australia, followed by Canada and Brazil.
The main sectors for investment are energy and transport. In developed countries, Chinese investors actively participate in the acquisition of companies and real estate, in developing countries they are engaged in construction and infrastructure projects in the fields of energy, logistics and transport.
Citizens of China are leading in most programs of "golden visas" around the world: according to CBS News, over the last 10 years, more than 100,000 Chinese have received residence permit, spending about $ 24 billion on them. For immigration, they prefer developed countries, the most popular among them is the USA . About 40,000 Chinese citizens took part in the American program of the "golden visa", invested more than $ 7.7 billion in the US economy.
The flight of capital from the country and the active emigration of the affluent sections of the population forced the Chinese government to seriously think about toughening the regulation of foreign economic activity of its citizens. Beginning at the end of 2016, a number of measures were introduced to increase the transparency of transactions with foreign counterparties, significantly limiting the ability of Chinese people to invest abroad. For example, now Chinese buyers can not transfer abroad more than $ 50,000 per year. Under serious restrictions were investment in real estate, including hotels, cinemas and sports clubs.
However, analysts today give an ambiguous assessment of the effectiveness of the measures taken. For example, in an interview with Citilab, Lawrence Yun, chief economist and head of research at the National Association of Realtors, said that since the beginning of 2017, the number of requests for the purchase of real estate in the US from Chinese citizens is growing. He also told that enterprising Chinese people quickly find ways to circumvent restrictions: for example, they withdraw money on behalf of numerous relatives and neighbors, paying with them personally inside the country.
On the other hand, makrostatistika looks less optimistic: Forbes published data referring to the Ministry of Commerce of China that for 10 months of 2017, foreign investment in annual terms decreased by more than 40%. According to Chinamoneynetwork, citing the Cushman & amp; Wakefield, in the third quarter of 2017, Chinese investments in real estate abroad amounted to only $ 2.5 billion - the lowest since 2013.
China and Greece.
The Chinese business is looking for new ways to earn money and in recent years has been actively developing cooperation with Greece. So, according to the Bank of Greece, from 2005 to the end of 2016, the total investment in Greece from China and Hong Kong amounted to 585.2 million euros, of which 346.3 million was invested in 2016. However, according to a study by the Institute of International Economic Relations, the real volume of transactions is much larger: for example, according to the Ministry of Commerce of China, by the end of June 2017, China has invested in Greece more than $ 1.3 billion, according to the Greek Embassy in Beijing, this amount reaches $ 1, 6 billion, and according to the calculations of the American Enterprise Institute, from 2005 to 2017, China invested in Greece about $ 6.7 billion.
Such growth is primarily due to the conclusion of a number of major privatization deals involving Chinese companies:
- in 2016, the Chinese company COSCO, one of the largest port operators in the world, acquired 51% of the shares in Piraeus port for 280.5 million euros. Five years after the signing of the agreement, the company will receive an additional 16% of shares worth 88 million euros. During this time, COSCO will have to invest 300 million euros in the modernization of ship-repair assets and logistics;
- in June 2017, the National Grid Corp. of China acquired a 24% stake in Greece's state-owned electric grid company ADMIE worth 320 million euros.
In parallel, Chinese business is actively cooperating with private Greek companies. In 2014, an agreement was reached on the development of renewable energy projects totaling more than $ 1.2 billion between the Chinese construction corporation Sinohydro and the Greek Terna Energy. The agreement was also attended by the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC).
In November 2017, Shenhua Group entered into an agreement to acquire a 75% stake in four wind power plants owned by the Copelouzos Group. The deal is not disclosed, but companies estimate the cost of future projects related to the development of renewable energy sources at 3 billion euros.
One of the most famous and discussed projects in Greece today is Elinnicon, an ambitious plan to turn the former capital airport into a huge park area. The investor, who will invest 8 billion euros in the project, was an international consortium consisting of the Chinese conglomerate Fosun Group, the Arab developer Eagle Hills and the Greek company Latsis Group.
In addition, the Chinese are the most numerous participants in the "golden visa" program launched by the Greek government in 2014. Under its terms, the Greek residence permits can be obtained for the purchase of real estate valued at 250,000 euros. So, from the beginning of the program until October 2017, more than 2000 Chinese investors and their families received residence permits.
The active expansion of China into the Greek infrastructure, according to Tranio, is dictated by two factors. First, the global financial crisis and the debt crisis in Greece led to a general cheapening of Greek assets, making them risky, but very attractive objects for investment. Secondly, the geographical position of Greece: it is an important trading partner and a transit point for the "new silk road" between Europe and the Middle East. Privatization programs have opened access to Chinese money for the most important objects of the logistics infrastructure, which in turn will allow China to strengthen its control over foreign trade flows.
Dream islands: Chinese capital poured into Greece.