Foreigners are to be allowed to invest in China's defense sector, AFP reported, citing state media. Outside investment, including money from overseas, can be channeled into firms producing less sensitive military equipment as well as goods for the civil and consumer markets. The move is part of wider efforts to bring stronger growth and shareholder reform to the long-protected industry. Defense-related companies are to be encouraged to raise funds on domestic and overseas capital markets, state media said, citing Sun Qin, vice minister of the Commission of Science, Technology, and Industry for National Defense, the sector's regulator. The end goal is to deliver a more market-oriented and innovative industry. However, any defense interests linked to national security are likely to remain closely guarded by Beijing.