This Is What Motivates Chinese Companies To Invest In Australia

China’s President Xi Jinping and wife Peng Liyuan in Brisbane. Chris Hyde/Getty Images

KPMG and the University of Sydney have conducted the first research into the experience and views of Chinese investors in Australia.

The survey, The Demystyifying Chinese Investment in Australia, shows that Chinese investors recognise they have to do better with local integration.

Chinese investors are similar to other international investors in that they are commercially motivated, investments have to be profitable and operations have to be locally integrated. They see investment in Australia as part of their globalisation strategies and not as an isolated market.

“What they learn in Australia, they will apply to other markets and vice versa,” the study says in its conclusions gathered from the views of senior executives from 51 Chinese-invested companies registered in Australia.

“They feel that they are welcome in Australia and that Australia is a safe place to invest.”

Australia and China have closed negotiations on a free trade agreement which will bring greater access to the massive market which is mainland China. In return China will get better access to the Australia.

Here’s what motivates Chinese investment in Australia:

Australian governments and business leaders are seen as supportive, but the investment approval process is seen intrusive and costly while recent improvements are acknowledged.

They see the new Federal Government as more supportive than its predecessor.

Chinese investors feel their operations are constrained by Australia’s physical infrastructure. The survey reveals a clear awareness of lessons that need be learned.

Relations with Australian board members, management and trade unions are not as good as they could be.

“Chinese investors feel that they are not yet fully integrated in Australia’s corporate environment, but we also see that the take-up of professional services and other support mechanisms is increasing,” the report says.

“The perceived lack of information about the Australian business environment is of concern because it is mirrored by a similar perception in Australia that too little is known about the Chinese market.

“This is an area that should be addressed as a priority at different levels – corporate and government – because Chinese investments in Australia will open doors to global markets for Australian business partners.”

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