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China calls for more investment between China, ASEAN

Source:   Time:

NANNING - Bilateral investment between China and Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) is low compared with bilateral trade volume, a senior official of China's Ministry of Commerce (MOC) said Friday.

Yi Xiaozhun, vice minister of the MOC, made the statement at the ongoing fifth Pan-Beibu Gulf (PBG) Economic Cooperation Forum in Nanning, capital of southwestern China's Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region.

In 2009, bilateral investment between China and ASEAN nations totaled $10 billion, a sharp contrast with the $213 billion of bilateral trade, said Yi, attributing the low investment to the fragmented infrastructure system within the China-ASEAN region.

"Take the Bangkok-Kunming railway as an example. Because the railway has different standards for load capacity in the Chinese and Thai parts, goods need to be unloaded and reloaded when they reach the border, adding to cost and lowering efficiency."

Yi also called for more efforts to produce a sound legal system for investment.

He also called for policy transparency and stability.

In the first half of the year, China-ASEAN trade totaled $136.5 billion, up nearly 55 percent from the same period last year.

Exports to ASEAN countries hit $64.6 billion, up more than 45 percent year on year.

Imports from ASEAN countries totaled nearly $72 billion, up 64 percent year on year, according to the MOC.

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