China’s Business Ties Strengthen Amid Trade Tensions and Slowdown in Foreign Investment

Xi Jinping Holds Meeting with American Business Leaders in Beijing

Amidst ongoing tensions with the US over trade restrictions and cyberattacks, Chinese President Xi Jinping recently met with a group of American business executives in Beijing. The meeting was an effort by the Chinese leader to boost confidence amid a slowdown in foreign investment, which hit a 30-year low last year.

Investors have expressed concerns about fluctuating sentiments as China pursues its development and security objectives. Warm words from authorities have been followed by actions such as investigations into consultancy firms, the expansion of anti-spy laws, and restrictions on data access. A structural economic slowdown has caused executives to reassess the risks and rewards of operating in China.

President Xi used to hold more frequent gatherings with executives prior to the pandemic, including at events like the annual Boao Forum for Asia, often referred to as China’s Davos. However, he is not expected to attend this year’s forum, which began on Tuesday in Hainan. This meeting with American business executives signals China’s desire to address concerns and strengthen ties amidst ongoing tensions.

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