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BRANCH BANKING | Staff Reporter, China
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Mainland banks bet big on Taiwan

Mainland investments in Taiwan’s banking industry account for 31% of all of China’s investments in Taiwan since 2009.

This makes Taiwan’s banking industry the top recipient of Mainland investments in this period. The two other top investment targets were the retail sector and the information technology or IT sector, each of which received 19% of Mainland investments.

Mainland investors poured US$122.2 million into Taiwan in the first half of 2012, a jump of 464% year-on-year, according to Taiwan’s Ministry of Economic Affairs.

Most of this total, however, came from two Mainland banks, the state-owned Bank of China and Bank of Communications, which used the funds to upgrade their branch networks on Taiwan.

A total of 63 Mainland investments in Taiwan were approved in the first half of this year, an increase of 17% from the same period of last year, the ministry said.

The Mainland’s restrictive banking regulations, however, have had the opposite effect on Taiwanese investments. A total of 220 Taiwanese investments were made in China, down 28% year-on-year. The value of these investments fell 27% for the same period.

Taiwan invested US$2.5 billion on 153 projects in foreign countries, excluding China, in the first six months of 2012, an annual increase of 80% and 3%, respectively, according to the ministry.

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