China slams India’s curbs on Chinese investments

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China has taken strong exception to India’s decision to block investments from the country amid the fight against the coronavirus pandemic.

The Chinese embassy in a statement termed the move by India to block the investments by making amendments in the Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) norms on Saturday a violation of World Trade Organisations principles of non-discrimination.

"The additional barriers set by Indian side for investors from specific countries violate WTO's principle of non-discrimination, and go against the general trend of liberalization and facilitation of trade and investment. We hope India would revise relevant discriminatory practices, treat investments from different countries equally, and foster an open, fair and equitable business environment," the Chinese Embassy statement added.

The amendment made by India seeks to make it mandatory for companies in countries that share a border with India to approach the government for investing in India, instead of taking the automatic route.

"An entity of a country, which shares land border with India or where the beneficial owner of an investment into India is situated in or is a citizen of any such country, can invest only under the Government route," the Ministry of Commerce and Industry said in a press release.

The existing FDI policy as applicable to investments from India's neighbourhood, was confined to Bangladesh and Pakistan, while the new policy brings China, Nepal, Bhutan and Myanmar within its ambit.

There has been growing concern across the world that Chinese companies are buying cheap, distressed assets slammed by the Covid-19 pandemic. Countries such as Australia and Germany have reportedly tightened their FDI policies in recent weeks to protect their companies (with inputs from NDTV).

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