China top foreign investor in Germany

China was the top foreign investor in Germany last year, ahead of the United States, Switzerland and France, according to government development agency Germany Trade & Invest.

The mainland invested in 158 projects, while the US invested in 110, Switzerland 91 and France 53, GTAI said yesterday.

Europe accounted for around half of total foreign investment in Germany.

One in five investment projects – the majority of which involved the setting up of new sites in Germany – were in mechanical engineering or automotive sectors, and 13 percent were in new technologies, while renewable energy accounted for around 6 percent.

Earlier this week, Chinese automotive supplier Hebei Lingyun Industrial Group Corp agreed to buy Kiekert, a German maker of latch systems for cars.

And in January, Chinese construction equipment giant Sany Heavy Industry acquired German family-owned engineering firm Putzmeister in what was described as one of the biggest deals in the so-called “Mittelstand” sector that makes up the backbone of the German economy.

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