Mergers and acquisitions activity in China rose 53% to a value of US$50.6 billion this year compared to 2006, the Financial Times reported. The figure, from a report by PricewaterhouseCoopers, includes deals in Hong Kong and Macao. The volume of deals increased 45% to 987 transactions over last year, with large domestic deals contributing to the increase in activity. Big transactions included Beijing Enterprises Holdings, the Hong Kong-listed arm of Beijing's city government, buying Beijing Gas Group in April for US$1.5 billion and Chalco's acquisition of 49% of Yunnan Copper Group for US$1 billion in October. Outbound investment more than doubled to US$16.4 billion in the year ending November. Notable international deals included Ping An Insurance buying 4.2% in Fortis Bank for US$2.7 billion in November and ICBC buying 20% in South Africa's Standard Bank for US$5.56 billion in October.