UNCTAD: Global FDI halved in H1

Added On October 29, 2020

The United Nations Conference on Trade and Development on Tuesday said global foreign direct investment or FDI dropped by nearly half in the first half of the year.
According to a report by the UN trade body, global FDI flows in the first half of 2020 dropped 49 percent annually to 399 billion U.S. dollars as lockdowns around the world slowed existing investment projects.
The report showed that the biggest declines appeared in Europe and the United States. It warned of a highly uncertain outlook depending on how long the pandemic last and how effective policy interventions are.      
The report said the outlook for the full year remained in line with earlier projections of a 30-40 percent decrease.
 In geographical breakdown, developed economies saw the biggest fall, with FDI reaching an estimated 98 billion U.S. dollars in the first half, a decline of 75 percent compared to 2019.
SOUNDBITE(English): JAMES ZHAN, UNCTAD's Director of Investment and Enterprise
"FDI flow (into China) remains relatively stable, and for the first half of the year, the decline was really modest and in fact according to the latest data, for the first 9 months all together of this year, FDI into China increased by 2.5%."
Zhan added that government investment facilitation measures focusing on greenfield investment projects had helped to stabilize investment activities.
SOUNDBITE(English): JAMES ZHAN, UNCTAD's Director of Investment and Enterprise
"But overall investment flows into China remains at high level, and this is probably because China was one of the very few countries, that was among the first to control the pandemic and also resume a production system in the country. In the mean time, the Chinese government put in place effective measures to retain investments to service the operations of the multinationals operating in the country, and also put in place new measures to track investment. And looking at the structure of the investment into the country of the first half of this year, it's mainly in the high tech services sector and that sector attracted a double digit of investment flows."
The UN body last month warned of a "lost decade" and forecast the global economy to contract by 4.3 percent this year, while expecting a return to positive territory in 2021.