Trump

Asia-Latin America Round-up — 21 Apr 2017

Highlights

A Farmer Just Criticized Alibaba’s Push Into The Countryside — Fortune
Alibaba has been pushing to develop a rural e-commerce platform, Rural Taobao. In late 2014, it announced a five year plan to invest $1.6 billion to create 100,000 so called Rural Taobao centers. However, recently the push has slacked. Farmers who joined the service are complaining about meager incomes and Alibaba’s scaling back of commissions last year. There’s a growing cynicism about Alibaba’s intentions of helping rural villages sell their wares to the richer cities. The criticism is that Rural Taobao is looking more like a way to connect city sellers to the countryside than the other way around.

China’s Second-Richest Man Says the Government Scuttled His Deal for Dick Clark Productions — Fortune
Dalian Wanda founder Wang Jianlin, one of China's richest men, said in an interview with the FT that the country's recent capital controls prevented his company from acquiring Hollywood's Dick Clark Productions in what was expected to be a $1 billion deal. More interestingly, Wang also said pressure from certain players in the U.S. hampered the deal, though he did not identify who: “Policies have changed on both sides, so we gave up the acquisition,” Wang told the paper. “Both countries have changed their policy. Some people in the United States did not agree with our acquisitions, and some of the policies in China are changing.” Wanda's $8 billion production studio in Qingdao, which Wang has called "Hollywood of the East," is expected to open this summer.

PortMiami traffic with Asia rises 11% — Miami Today
PortMiami’s dredging is beginning to payoff. Asian service and volumes rose 11% in 2016 alone, said Assistant Port Director Kevin Lynskey. The growth comes as a result of $1.3 billion in capital infrastructure investments made to handle larger post-Panamax ships, according to the port. The port can now handle six post-Panamax ships a week.

China-Latin America

New flight route to boost China-Mexico tourism, trade — Xinhua
China Southern Airlines Vice President Han Wensheng was in Mexico for the inauguration on Tuesday of the carrier's new Guangzhou-to-Mexico City route, which will operate a Boeing 787 three times a week. This is the beginning of a greater turn to the region for China Southern, for both business and tourism, and they recognize they need to get the word out in China. Says Han: "Currently we are in talks with Mexico's Tourism Promotion Board, since the main goal is to increase knowledge about Mexico among the Chinese market to draw more passengers." 

China Development Bank approves loan for Argentine productive sectors — BNamericas
China’s policy banks are at it again. Argentina’s investment and foreign trade bank BICE and China Development Bank (CDB) signed an agreement under which BICE will receive a US$150mn loan for financing investment projects. The credit line will be used for financing productive investments such as SMEs, renewable energy projects, energy infrastructure, and agricultural and manufacturing goods.

China's CMG in talks for Advent's Brazil port stake — Reuters
China Merchants Group Ltd is in advanced talks to buy Advent International Corp's 50% stake in TCP Terminal de Contêineres de Paranaguá, Brazil’s second-busiest container port. Advent is supposed to be looking for at least R$3.5b ($1.1b) for the stake. Dubai-based DP World - which is looking to buy out Odebrecht's share of the Embraport container terminal at Brazil’s largest port, Santos - was also in the running for the stake, but those negotiations have "hit a snag."

Chinese drone-maker DJI looks to expand in LatAm — Shanghai Daily
DJI - which has 70% of the global drone market - is looking to expand in Latin America. They’ve seen notable growth of clients for electrical and telephone line inspections, as well as agriculture. Online sales of DJI drones in Latin America began in 2014, but the company had no physical presence in the region until January 2016 - although the article doesn’t bother to mention where they have a presence. According to a DJI rep, most sales in Latam are corporate, as the region's "very high tax burden" discourages average citizens from purchasing drones.

China’s HNA said buying stake in Brazil’s second busiest airport — South China Morning Post
China’s HNA Group goes on a global shopping spree — The Economist
HNA Group — owner of Hainan Airways and increasingly a global real estate empire — is rumored to be combining it’s two loves by picking up troubled construction company Odebrecht’s 30% stake in Rio’s international airport, Galeão. Timing and size of the deal still unclear. The Economist also profiled the group, noting that it is rumored to be bidding for Forbes magazine.

Asia-Latin America

Jamaica to Benefit from Japan-Funded Energy Project — Jamaica Information Service
Japan International Cooperation Agency’s (JICA) is launching a ¥300m ($2.7m) grant-funded energy efficiency project in the Caribbean. The three-year technical cooperation project will bolster the Government’s efforts to boost the country’s renewable energy generation capacity while enhancing energy efficiency. Barbados, Jamaica, St. Kitts and Nevis, and Trinidad and Tobago are the countries targeted.

China Econ/Policy

R&F Properties Adds 2 Silicon Valley Projects to $9.6B in 2017 Deals — Mingtiandi
Looks like R&F Properties has picked up its fifth and sixth US property projects, adding a pair of Silicon Valley sites to the $9.6 billion in new overseas developments it has committed to this year. Last week it acquired the Park View Towers and North San Pedro Tower 3 residential projects in San Jose, California from local developer Swenson for an undisclosed sum. The already-entitled projects have more than 1 million square feet for over 500 residences across three acres. 

Few major Western leaders to attend Chinese summit — Miami Herald
Leaders of 28 countries are set to attend next month’s "One Belt, One Road” summit, but the only bold-faced names are Vladimir Putin of Russia, Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey and Spain's Mariano Rajoy. It is unclear who will be attending from Latin America The program is closely linked to the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, China's version of a global financial institution that faced US skepticism when it was announced in 2013.

One reason Trump changed his tune on China? He really likes the Chinese president — CNN
An analysis of the results from the Mar-a-Lago summit earlier this month show that the biggest driver of decision-making in the White House is personal relationships, and it turns out President Xi is a charmer.

For a true view of Chinese economy, look from the sky: N.Y. Fed — Reuters
Is Chinese Growth Overstated? — Liberty Street Economics
Mike’s former colleagues at the FRBNY use some innovative measures to track Chinese economic growth - looking at nighttime satellite images. Their research shows that despite fears sparked by the 2015 Chinese stock market correction, the Chinese economy did not go into downturn then, and now "there are few immediate indications that Chinese growth is being systematically overestimated."

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Asia-Latin America Round-up — 14 Apr 2017

Highlights
Trump Lacks Staff for Trade Talks With China — WSJ
Trump Says He Offered China Better Trade Terms in Exchange for Help on North Korea — WSJ
Trump Says Dollar ‘Getting Too Strong,’ Won’t Label China a Currency Manipulator — WSJ
As is the case on many other policy issues, President Trump is hamstrung by the fact that he isn’t fielding a complete team on China. Last week’s summit with President Xi was quickly overshadowed, both by the limpid strike on Syria as well as by the fact that nothing was decided at the summit. While this will have a short term tactical benefit for Chinese investors looking to invest in the US — labeling China as a currency manipulator would have been a significant hurdle to bilateral trade and investment — more concerning is the fact that the President is leaning on (and potentially getting played by) adversarial leaders:

Mr. Trump said he told his Chinese counterpart he believed Beijing could easily take care of the North Korea threat. Mr. Xi then explained the history of China and Korea, Mr. Trump said.

“After listening for 10 minutes, I realized it’s not so easy,” Mr. Trump recounted. “I felt pretty strongly that they had a tremendous power” over North Korea,” he said. “But it’s not what you would think.”

Silvio Berlusconi sells AC Milan to Chinese investors — ESPN
Media magnate, former Prime Minister, and party enthusiast Silvio Berlusconi has announced that — after two years of negotiation — he is selling his stake in AC Milan to  Chinese businessmen Yonghong Li and Han Li, for €740 million.  Il Cavaliere had owned his hometown team for 31 years.

China-Latin America

BYD in talks with Chilean lithium producers — FT
Chinese auto manufacturer BYD (part-owned by Warren Buffett) is talking to lithium producers in Chile about potential deals to secure supplies of the key battery material. The company is considering a range of options from partnerships to supply agreements and direct investments. Chile is one of the world’s largest sources of lithium; Beijing wants to double electric vehicle battery capacity by 2020, and has encouraged producers to invest overseas.

Latin America's oil-dependent states struggling to repay Chinese debts — China Dialogue
As Venezuela circles the drain (President Maduro was pelted with eggs at a rally of supporters this week), China continues to worry about it’s loans to the country, as well as Brazil, and Ecuador, that have both struggled economically of late. This article does not reveal anything new; but that it is coming from a semi-official Chinese source does reveal that they are semi-officially worried.

Asia-Latin America

Bacanora Minerals to supply lithium to Japan’s Hanwa — FT
It’s not just the Chinese that are after Lithium. The world’s largest lithium mine in northern Mexico is going to supply lithium to Japan’s Hanwa, a diversified industrial company that does a lot of work in non-ferrous metals.

Dubai Chamber to lead high-level trade mission to Latin America — Reuters Zawya
The Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry is sending a trade mission to  Brazil, Paraguay and Argentina the week of April 15-22. GCC countries rely heavily on imports from Latin America, especially in the category of agricultural and foodstuff products.

China Econ/Policy

Guangzhou R&F Pays $196M to Pick Up Second London Site in Two Weeks — Mingtiandi
Guangzhou R&F bought Vauxhall Square from CLS Holdings for £157.7 million ($196 million) this week. The deal comes just two weeks after the Hong Kong-listed mainland developer made its maiden acquisition in London with the purchase of a pair of adjoining residential sites in south London’s Croydon area for £60 million ($74.8 million).

Tishman Speyer Signs $1.4B Deal with Chinese Online Wealth Manager Creditease — Mingtiandi
Tishman Speyer signed a funding agreement with the wealth management arm of China’s fintech heavyweight CreditEase this week which could provide the US company with as much as $1.4 billion in funding from Chinese consumers. The agreement is over the next three years, and extends a similar deal signed between the two groups in 2015. In 2015 Tishman Speyer struck an investment deal with the asset management divisions of China Life and Ping An that brought in $167 million each from the two Chinese insurance giants for a $500 million  mixed-use project on Boston’s Pier 4. In addition to its Boston deal, the American developer also teamed up with China Vanke back in 2013 for a residential project in San Francisco.

Fosun Buys Out French Property Investment Firm for $48M — Mingtiandi
Fosun Property Holdings, the property investment and management arm of China’s Fosun Group, has inked an agreement to take over PAREF, a French property owner and manager, for around $48 million. This follows through on a binding offer announced at the start of the year. PAREF Group, also known as the Paris Realty Fund, owns various commercial buildings within and outside the Paris area. Fosun has been shopping extensively in Europe over the past two years.

What China can learn from the Pearl river delta — The Economist
The Economist had a big spread last week about the Pearl River Delta, the Southern Chinese megalopolis (at 66m people, it is larger than Britain) that many see as China’s future. Encompassing Hong Kong, Macau, Guangzhou, and Shenzhen, among others, it is less SOE-oriented and more engaging with the larger world ("As a global trading power the region is outranked only by America and Germany”). Notably, it also includes Zhuhai, a city that is to play host to an industrial park to promote China-Latin America cooperation; this puts Zhuhai in context.

First China-bound direct freight train leaves London — People's Daily
The fruit of China’s “One Belt, One Road” initiative, a direct train from London’s DP World to the eastern Chinese city of Yiwu left this week. Carrying "vitamins, baby products and other goods,” the train will take 18 days to travel and change locomotives due to different railway gauges in the countries.

Chinese Blame America for United Airlines — Foreign Policy
Soft power comes in many forms. The news of abusive treatment of a Chinese-American by United and the Chicago Police this week has taken China by storm. The video racked up more than 330 million views on Weibo and WeChat. Beyond the obvious connection of ethnicity, the video plays to Chinese fears about capitalism, red in tooth and nail, as well ass worries about authoritarian governments oppressing individuals in China.

China Elevates ‘Good Cop’ on Trade to Counter Trump Barbs — Bloomberg
Zhang Xiangchen, a Chinese official who is fluent in English and seen as very pro-trade, has been named as the country’s ambassador to the World Trade Organization.

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Asia-Latin America Round-up — 7 Apr 2017

Highlights

Trump’s Bad Deal With China — Politico
China’s growing clout in international economic affairs — The Economist
Averting a Chinese-American trade war — The Economist
Inside the Kushner channel to China — Washington Post
The big news this week is Xi and Trump’s meeting today at Mar-a-Lago. There is a lot of uncertainty surrounding the meeting, not least because Trump’s goals for the bilateral relationship are unclear, if not contradictory. However, China’s interests are well known:

China wants the Trump administration to adopt its concept of “a new model of great power relations,” Xi’s proposal to avoid conflict and focus on cooperation. China also wants Trump to endorse Xi’s signature “One Belt, One Road” initiative, China’s massive regional infrastructure and development project. China also seeks U.S. noninterference in issues it considers core interests, including Taiwan, Tibet and its internal affairs.

Interestingly, that message has been delivered to Trump son-in-law Jared Kushner, who the Chinese see as either an influential princeling, playing a role similar to those played in China; or - more concerningly - an out-of-his-depth novice who will get played.

China’s Currency Takes a Twist Ahead of Trump-Xi Meeting — WSJ
The yuan is up 1% against the dollar so far this year, a rise that began shortly before Donald Trump was inaugurated as president. The rise could complicate a central criticism that Mr. Trump has leveled against China: that it is manipulating its currency downward at the expense of the U.S. to help bolster exports and its economy.

As Trump Meets Xi at Mar-a-Lago, There’s a ‘Wild Card’ — NYT
Guo Wengui is a member of Mar-a-Lago, but maybe better known as the developer of the "Dragon Building,” the Pangu Plaza near the Olympic complex in Beijing. Guo is now in the US because he left China during a corruption scandal linked to the jailing of his political patron, a top security official named Ma Jian. 

Latin America, trade on the line, will watch closely as Trump and Xi meet in Florida — McClatchy DC
Latin American leaders will be watching Mar-a-Lago to be looking for signs of stability and assurances that trade would remain open. Latam will see any signs of protectionism and nationalism as harming trade prospects and creating more inequities in the hemisphere’s trade relations.

Trade After the Trans-Pacific Partnership — NYT
As an example of the region's (and especially the Pacific Alliance’s) interest in pursuing trade in the era of Trump, Chile’s Foreign Minister Heraldo Muñoz wrote an op-ed on Monday stating: "The signal …is clear: Multilateral trade and Pacific integration are alive and kicking.”

Construction in Trump’s crosshairs — The Real Deal
Windows, steel beams, concrete, doors, floorings and entire curtain walls used in New York City skyscrapers and around the country are now regularly imported. These imports could be impacted by Trump’s economic nationalism or House Speaker Ryan’s proposed Boarder Adjustment Tax. Richard Wood, the president and CEO of Plaza Construction is noted, saying the percentage of materials from overseas is steadily increasing, and any restrictions could be damaging unless they are slowly phased in. “Otherwise,” he said, “a lot of domestic companies will be hurt very badly.”

Miami ficou 'cool': trocou o brega pelo cosmopolita — Brazil Journal
“Miami is now more than beaches and shopping centers” to Brazilians, says NP-friend Santiago Fittipaldi. He notes interest in Art Basel and the Pérez Art Museum.

China-Latin America

Why are Chilean fruits so successful in China? — Fresh Plaza
Chinese delegation visits the Chilean fruit industry — Fresh Plaza
Chile’s advantage in the Chinese market is a long time coming. In 1970, they became the first South American country to establish diplomatic relations with China. In 2005, Chile and China signed a free trade agreement; in 2015, they established a bilateral currency swap agreement; and in 2016, they announced the establishment of a comprehensive strategic partnership. Further highlighting the bilateral relationship, a Chinese delegation traveled to Santago last week to meet with Chile's Association of Fruit Exporters.(ASOEX). Led by the director of the Entry & Exit Inspection and Quarantine Bureau of the Port of Shenzhen (CIQ), the delegation also included representatives from the Association for Consumer Products Quality and Safety Promotion (CPQS), as well as representatives of several Chinese import companies.

Peru: 38% of ag companies exporting to China quit within a year — Fresh Plaza
However, there still remain opportunities in the agricultural space. According to the Peruvian Chamber of China Commerce (Capechi), Peruvian agricultural companies who export to China have a high rate of quitting because they don't continue doing business there. The companies simply disappeared or stopped exporting to China and have focused on other markets.  

Gezhouba plans to buy Brazilian utility — China Daily
Chinese construction conglomerate China Gezhouba Group Co announced on Thursday it was spending $200 million to acquire the Sistema Produtor São Lourenço water company in São Paulo in Brazil. In 2013, São Lourenço signed a deal with São Paulo utility Sabesp to manage local water supply and sludge treatment for 25 years. 

Expanding China invests in America's backyard: Latin America — CNBC
While trade between the U.S. and Latin America has doubled since 2000, China's trade with the region has multiplied 22 times, according to OECD economist Angel Melguzio. In fact, Beijing is now the biggest trading partner for the major economies of Brazil, Chile and Peru — and Argentina, El Salvador and Guatemala are well-placed to profit from China's booming demand for global food. Meanwhile, China lends the region a lot of money — around $30 billion in 2015, up from $231 million in 2005. And the funds largely come with no strings attached.

Chinalco to ramp up investment in Peru copper mine — FT
China's state-owned Chinalco said it would step up investment at its flagship project in Peru, as the country becomes an increasingly important to China’s raw materials — copper — needs.

CIC-led group buys stake in Brazil pipeline — China Daily
Sovereign wealth fund China Investment Corp (CIC) said on Wednesday it had-jointly with Canada's Brookfield Asset Management Inc and other institutional investors-acquired 90 percent stake in Nova Transportadora do Sudeste SA from Petrobras, which controls a natural gas transmission asset in southeast Brazil.

Asia-Latin America

Mexico’s Oaxaca eyes economic ties with Korea — Korea Herald
The secretary of economy of Oaxaca and his team spent a four-day visit to Korea working to boost economic ties. Oaxaca is a southern state in Mexico that is heavily agricultural. In order to build further cooperation, Oaxaca is planning to open a Korea desk to promote bilateral investment.

Estados Unidos retira fondo de desarrollo para América Latina — Reuters
In another penny-wise, pound-foolish move, the US has informed the Inter-American Development Bank that we will no longer be contributing toward hemispheric development.

Latin American-Gulf Economic Ties Are Still Largely Aspirational — World Politics Review
Michael Shifter, president of the Inter-American Dialogue, outlines the geographic, political and cultural obstacles that have stymied attempts to deepen ties between Latin American and Gulf countries.

India: The next big opportunity for Latin American and Caribbean trade — Inter-American Development Bank Beyond Borders
According to the report India: Latin America’s Next Big Thing? the opportunity lies in focusing on where India’s emergence will be seen most: trade and investment in goods and services.

China Econ/Policy

HNA backs Tishman Speyer’s bets in Brooklyn, Hudson Yards — The Real Deal
HNA Puts Manhattan Tower on the Block as China’s Mega-Buyer Starts Selling — Mingtiandi
HNA Property Group — an arm of Hainan Airlines — is busy in NYC. They’ve announced plans to sell their 90 percent stake in a 383,983-square foot building on Sixth Avenue in Manhattan. They’ve also partnered with Tishman Speyer on the development of the Wheeler, a 10-story 620,000-square-foot creative office project rising above the Macy’s in Downtown Brooklyn, as well as on the 2.85-million-square-foot, Bjarke Ingels-designed tower known as the Spiral in the Hudson Yards area.

HNA in $375M Deal to Add London Exhibition Centre to Global Portfolio — Mingtiandi
Not content with NYC, HNA is also shopping in London. HNA, together with Bugsby Property, is said to be in talks to acquire the venues division of the UK’s Capital & Countries Properties (CapCo), which owns the Olympia exhibition center in west London, for £300 million ($375 million). The Olympia, a London landmark originally built in 1886, is made up of seven event venues.

China Creates SEZ for Medical Tourism — Marginal Revolution
Hainan Boao Lecheng international medical tourism pilot zone, the first of its kind in the country, was approved by the State Council in 2013. It enjoys nine preferential polices, including special permission for medical talent, technology, devices and drugs, and an allowance for entrance of foreign capital and international communications. The pilot zone also has permission to carry out leading-edge medical technology research, such as stem cell clinical research. The zone is too small to have a significant impact on worldwide R&D but China’s original SEZs soon expanded.

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Asia-Latin America Round-up — 31 Mar 2017

Highlights

Looking sweet in the C-suite — The Real Deal Miami
Miami’s top commercial brokers said the increased appetite for Miami office assets is being driven by deep-pocketed institutional investors abroad. Major international players accounted for three of the five largest office deals in South Florida last year: Zara’s Amancio Ortega’s $516.6 million Southeast Financial Center purchase, Japanese trade conglomerate Sumitomo Corp.’s $220 million purchase of the Miami Tower and the Spanish family-owned Masaveu Corp.’s $175 million acquisition of a majority stake in the Courvoisier Centre on Brickell Key.

Some in the industry have expressed fears that political and economic turmoil abroad, as well as President Donald Trump’s foreign trade and immigration policies, will put a damper on activity. Many of these elements have already affected South Florida’s residential market. However, others say that it’s exactly that uncertainty abroad — as well as over what Trump will do next — that is the main motivation for buyers’ rushing to place such large bets on the Miami office market. “Just about always, the United States is the safest country for [foreign investment]; the one with the most transparent laws,” said Hermen Rodriguez, a senior managing director with HFF who helped broker the Southeast Financial deal. “In times of volatility, it seems like most of the foreign capital wants to be in the United States.”

Trump Administration Signals It Would Seek Mostly Modest Changes to Nafta — WSJ
Like Obama and George W Bush before him, President Trump’s plans to “tear up NAFTA” have run up against reality. The more modest proposed changes closely track both Hillary Clinton’s campaign proposals as well as changes that were to be made under the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement.

Trump Administration Lays Groundwork to Keep Big Tariffs on Chinese Goods — WSJ
However, it is not all roses, as the Department of Commerce is preparing a review of China’s “market-economy status” under the World Trade Organization. The review is expected to be announced as early as this week, just days before the Mar-a-Lago meeting between Xi Jinping and Trump. Beijing has said members of the WTO were required to start treating it as a market economy in December 2016, on the 15th anniversary of its membership. The Obama administration declined to do so. Adopting full market-economy status would involve changing the way the U.S. conducts trade cases and likely make it harder for American firms to win big punitive tariffs against Chinese companies blamed for dumping products on the U.S. market or selling goods that benefit from improper subsidies. The U.S. has dozens of punitive tariffs on steel products and other allegedly dumped products.

China-Latin America

Peru becomes China-led AIIB prospective member — Andina
Venezuela approved to join Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank — Xinhua
Peru and Venezuela have become a prospective member of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB). The countries have joined the China-backed institution in an attempt to gain access to low-cost long-term financing for major infrastructure works.

Chinese investors move in, take large slice of Latin American pie — China Daily
Chinese companies are forming the mainstay of foreign direct investment in Latin American and African markets as globalization suffers setbacks elsewhere, according to law firm DLA Piper:  "A growing percentage of our clients who are investing directly in Latin America are from the Chinese mainland, from sectors including energy, infrastructure and technology and so on.”

China state firms eye land around Panama Canal: waterway authority — Reuters
The Panama Canal Authority will officially open a tender to develop about 1,200 hectares of land - roughly the size of 1,200 football fields - around the waterway by the end of this year into a logistics park on land previously used by the United States military for target practice. Unclear where exactly this land is, but we suspect it is next to the Panama Pacifico development. China Communications Construction Corp, its subsidiary China Harbour Engineering Company and China Railway Group  are all mentioned as showing interest in the project.

American Airlines and China Southern Mull Alliance — Investopedia
American Airlines Group Inc and China Southern are in talks about a potential alliance that would merge the world's largest airline by fleet and revenue with China's biggest carrier. Air traffic between the two countries doubled from 2010 to 2015, and with most of the growth coming from outbound Chinese travelers. A beginning step into the Chinese market by American Airlines would be a boon for Miami International Airport, which is a big hub for AA. In 2015, Delta Airlines purchased a $450 million (3.55 percent) stake in China Eastern Airlines.

China’s R&F Buys London Site for $74.8M Despite Capital Controls — Mingtiandi
Guangzhou R&F Properties acquired a 5.5 acre London residential site for £60 million ($74.8 million) from a local real estate player. R&F was able to fund this purchase despite China’s announced capital controls, which it claims are endangering deals to acquire a chromium mine in Angola and to develop an agricultural program in Cambodia.

Blackstone Nearly Triples Money on SeaWorld Amid Controversy — Bloomberg
Blackstone agreed Friday to sell its remaining 21 percent stake in the theme-park operator to China’s Zhonghong Zhuoye Group Co. for about $449 million.

China’s Tencent Buys 5% Stake in Tesla — WSJ
The owner of WeChat bought a 5% stake in the electronic automaker for $1.8 billion. Tesla’s revenue in China more than tripled last year to $1.07 billion—a faster rate of growth than in the U.S., where sales about doubled to $4.2 billion. China made up 15% of Tesla’s $7 billion in revenue last year, compared with about 8% in 2015.

China Life to further diversify foreign investments — Asia Asset
China Life Insurance, the largest insurer in China, is looking to further diversify its foreign investments within the confines of regulatory controls on such moves, according to vice president Zhao Lijun. Mr. Zhao said China Life pursues overseas investments in three ways: through external mandates – where it outsources offshore investments to external managers – which currently amounts to about $1.3 billion; direct investments in alternative assets such as real estate; and overseas private equity investments.  

“Although the tightening on capital outflow imposed by the Chinese government last year affected our overseas investment plan, we believe Chinese enterprises will have to expand their turf overseas in the long run,” he said. “The company already has a number of overseas projects in the pipeline. It will strictly follow the government’s policies to carry out the investments.”

Mexico's governors tap investors in China, elsewhere — Reuters
Billionaire Carlos Slim And China's JAC Motors To Manufacture Cars For Latin American Market — Forbes
In a joint venture with China's JAC Motors, Mexican telecom tycoon Carlos Slim Helu's Giant Motors will begin manufacturing cars in  Mexico to sell in the Latin American market. The 4.4 billion peso ($230 million) alliance between Mexico’s Giant Motors and China's JAC Motors will manufacture vehicles in Mexico's central state of Hidalgo. Last month Giant Motors announced a joint venture with Moldex, a subsidiary of Grupo Bimbo, a Mexican-based multinational that is the world’s largest bread maker, to manufacture a made-in-Mexico electric vehicle.

Government of St. Lucia Unveils New Plans for Pearl of the Caribbean — St. Lucia Times News
The government of St. Lucia recently revealed that they will begin construction on the 700-acre Pearl of the Caribbean entertainment complex, beginning with a racetrack. The proposal will see the land sold to DSH Caribbean Star Limited — the Caribbean subsidiary of a Hong Kong based registered management and investment company — for a reported $90,000 per acre.

Asia-Latin America

UAE's DP World eyes Panama Canal opportunities — Emirates 24|7
DP World said that chairman Sultan Ahmed bin Sulayem met with Panama President Juan Carlos Varela last week to discuss potential logistics and industrial parks and other projects. DP World’s other operations in Latin America include logistics centres in the Dominican Republic and Peru and a 50-year concession for the under construction deepwater port at Posorja in Ecuador.

GLP Bidding War Shows Promise of Logistics Platforms in Asia, US — Mingtiandi
Global Logistic Properties — backed by Singapore sovereign wealth fund GIC — has reportedly shortlisted at least three groups in the bidding for the Singapore-based warehouse operator. The three groups bidding for the industrial property developer with logistics facilities in China, Japan, U.S. and Brazil and an estimated market value of US$8.9 billion were said to be: a management-backed consortium that includes Chinese investment firms Hillhouse Capital Management and Hopu Investment Management; a Warburg Pincus-led investor group; and the Blackstone Group.

Qatari Fund to Sell $900 Million Holding in Santander Brazil — Bloomberg
Qatar Investment Authority, the Persian Gulf country’s sovereign wealth fund, is selling as much as $900 million-worth of shares in Banco Santander SA’s Brazilian unit, taking advantage of a more than 75 percent rally in the stock over the past year. Following the completion of this offering, QIA expects to remain the second-largest shareholder of Santander Brasil after Banco Santander. Santander Brasil’s shares have rallied as the bank has recovered after years of underperformance, as well as easing of crisis concerns in the country.

China Econ/Policy

Anbang, Kushner End Talks on NYC Tower as Conflicts Cited — Bloomberg
The company owned by the family of President Trump’s son-in-law announced that “Kushner Companies is no longer in discussions with Anbang about 666 5th Avenue’s potential redevelopment, and our firms have mutually agreed to end talks regarding the property.” They claim to be in talks with other, unnamed, potential investors.

Fosun CEO Liang Xinjun Steps Down Amid Reports of Discord — Mingtiandi
Fosun CEO Liang Xinjun is leaving the company he co-founded more than 25 years ago, according to an announcement by Guo Guangchang, the billionaire chairman of the Shanghai-based investment conglomerate. The CEO is supposedly stepping down due to health reasons. Company vice president and former CFO Ding Guoqi is also leaving the Hong Kong-listed company. 

Mingtiandi quotes sources saying relations among Fosun’s senior executives had changed since Guo was detained by in Shanghai in December 2015, as part of Xi's anti-corruption crackdown. Since then, friction between Guo and Liang, was supposed to have grown to the point where the two were "no longer able to work together effectively."

China pledges to uphold Paris climate commitments — FT
China moves to gain international prestige while adhering to policies that will benefit the government with people choking on pollution.

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