China has "basically exited" from outbound investment curbs - regulator

BEIJING, REUTERS -- China has "basically exited" from its curbs on irrational outbound investment deals, Pan Gongsheng, the head of the foreign exchange regulator, was quoted by media on Monday as saying.

"At the end of last year, several departments took phased measures to control irrational outbound direct investment, and so far they have basically exited (from such measures)," Chinese financial news outlet Yicai quoted Pan, head of the State Administration of Foreign Exchange (SAFE), as saying. Pan did not elaborate.

China's non-financial outbound direct investment in January- October slumped 40.9 percent year-on-year to $86.31 billion as authorities bear down on what they say are speculative foreign ventures.

The decline in outbound investment reflected the government's restrictive measures and "a gradual maturity and return to rationality of external investment by market players", Pan said.

China says it continues to encourage genuine overseas deals but has vowed to limit overseas investment in property, hotels, entertainment, sports clubs and film industries which it suspects is more speculative.

China also says it encourages overseas investment by qualified companies as they integrate into the global industrial and value chain and support investment by firms involved in "Belt and Road" projects, while taking steps to curb investment risks.

In November, China's state planner issued draft guidelines for its companies investing overseas, streamlining approval processes for deals while raising oversight for projects in sensitive sectors and countries.