China Mobile has agreed to invest US$525 million in one of Taiwan’s leading telecoms service providers, the first direct investment on the island by a mainland state-owned company in six decades, the South China Morning Post reported. The planned purchase of a 12% stake in Far EasTone and a seat on the board, comes as new laws allowing mainland companies to invest in Taiwan take effect on May 1. The law is expected to start a flood of mergers and acquisitions in Taiwan. China Mobile’s purchase could face opposition from pro-independence parties in Taiwan, however. They are concerned the investment could be the first step in Beijing stealthily increasing its economic and political influence on the island. Sinosteel Corp, the mainland’s second-largest iron-ore trader, will also organise an investment fact-finding tour to Taiwan at the beginning of May.