China received the largest gross figure of foreign direct investment in the first half of 2018, according to the latest UN report, knocking the US off the top spot despite the growing trade tensions between Beijing and Washington.
Investment flows into China rose 6% year-on-year to $70 billion in the period up to July, the report said, extending to a 6.4% increase through September. As the Wall Street Journal notes, this is the fastest growth rate since 2015.
The US accounted for 2% of China’s total FDI during the first half, down from 4% last year.
The data breakdown shows that a favourite destination for funds was Chinese real estate. Property inflows jumped 31% up to the end of August compared to last year.
Manufacturing also showed an impressive rebound following a stagnant few years for factory investment. Manufacturing FDI rose almost 13% y/y in the same period, buoyed by a wave of global export growth.