In 2016, Ningbo approved 458 foreign-funded projects, with a total investment of US$12.06 billion, a contractual investment of US$7.99 billion and the actually paid-in capital of US$4.51 billion, up by 3.2%, 1.2%, 4.4% and 6.6% respectively. Great breakthroughs have been made in terms of the foreign investment with the actually paid-in capital hitting a historical high.
Statistics of 2016 show that with the enhancement of the confidence in the return of the investments, the foreign investors, especially the world Fortune 500 enterprises, got to start or increase their investment in Ningbo. In 2016, one new overseas investment project by a Fortune 500 enterprise was approved, and the actually paid-in foreign investment in the domestic projects reached US$1.17 billion. Meanwhile, eight Fortune 500 enterprises, including Formosa Plastics Group, Total of France, CHC International Hospital of the US, Unilever of the UK, Messer of Germany, AkzoNobel of Holland and Volkswagen of Germany, became the major enterprises for further investments, with the total investment increase of US$730 million and the contractual investment increase of US$760 million.
The major projects have promoted the increase of both the quantity and quality of the investments. In 2016, there were 22 large-scale projects with the investment (including the increased investment) of over US$100 million, with the total investment of US$7.25 billion and the contractual investment of US$3.71 billion, up by 22.2%, 29% and 48.5% respectively, and the actually paid-in investment reached US$180 million. The average investment scale of the newly approved projects stood at US$26.34 million and the contractual investment scale of US$17.45 million, up by 1.2% over the previous year.
As the global economic growth slows down, the multinational enterprises have transferred their emphasis from internal integration to external expansion, and acquisition has become the growth pole for investment attraction to Ningbo. In 2016, Ningbo approved 39 foreign-funded acquisition projects, up by 44.4%, with the total investment of US$370 million, the contractual capital of US$250 million, and the actually paid-in capital of US$400 million. Among others, the foreign-funded acquisition projects in the tertiary industry accounted for 66.6%, involving such fields as business building, business administration, civil public administration, product wholesale and trade broker agency. The largest acquisition project is about the acquisition of the Qiancheng Supply Chain Co. Ltd., with the acquisition volume of US$46.75 million. The acquisition investments are mainly from the 13 countries and regions including Hong Kong, Japan, South Korea, Singapore, Malaysia, the UK, France, the US, Canada, Columbia, Australia and Seychelles.
In addition, with the optimization of the foreign investment structure in Ningbo, the modern service industry has gradually become the "reservoir" for foreign capital utilization. In 2016, the approved contractual foreign investment for the tertiary industry projects reached US$4.79 billion, up by 25.2%, accounting for 60% of all the investments, an increase of 9.9 percentage points. The investment in the service industry has expanded to such new fields as education and wedding industry. So far, seven foreign-funded educational institutions have settled down in Ningbo, such as the Victoria Early Childhood Learning Center, Xinyong Experimental School, Fudong Educational Consultancy, EF, Jianyue Educational Consultancy and York Business Administration Consultancy, with the total investment of US$29.46 million and the contractual capital of US$21.92 million. The Zhanchi Wedding Service, which settled down at the Dongqian Lake Tourist Resort, was engaged in the wedding services, meeting services and photography services, and has become the second foreign-funded wedding service company in Ningbo.