China becoming a top investor in Italy

The press commenting FDIs has recently stressed the rising role of China and the success of Italy as destination, sometimes focusing on banks or just describing the status of diplomatic relationships and agreements (–cina-analisi-noci-144538.php?uuid=ABVMuy2B).

Every time a Chinese investment in Italy is announced, many voices of criticism are heard.

Voices of criticism arise every time a brand or an historical industrial asset is sold to Chinese investors (in fact, there are more and more graduates going for China’s internship, in exchange, more people are interested in study Mandarin to follow the Beijing and Shanghai business opportinities). But there is a difference between season sales and an open economy following global rules and opportunities.

But what is the actual situation of the investments coming from China?

The main research about foreign participation in Italian companies gives us a more complex picture, showing not only the sale of brands and delocalization of productions once originated and located in Italy.

Reprint, the research sourced by R&P in cooperation with Politecnico di Milano and Università di Brescia, identifies 322 Italian companies belonging to Chinese investors. As commented by Il Sole 24 Ore, 95 of them are located in Lombardy, confirming the various factors attracting investments to the region led by Milan: specific skills available on the territory, infrastructures, professional service and a superb position to work with the whole Europe. This last topic is the most interesting: China is not only interested in real estate or good deals. Many Chinese companies investing in Italy are growing and considering Italy as a bridgehead for the future development.

Lombardy is rich in the sectors where China has showed interested: food (Bright Food), energy (Shanghai Electric Corporation) and state grid, fashion, technology and real estate are all point of strength of the region.

Italy was the second destination for Chinese investments in Europe last year, maybe Marco Polo is coming back again

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