China approves new foreign investment law

A China yuan note is seen in this illustration photo. — Reuters
BEIJING: China’s parliament approved a new foreign investment law on Friday that promises to create a transparent environment for foreign firms as China and the United States work to end a trade war, though there is scepticism about its enforceability.
The law, to replace existing regulations for joint ventures and wholly foreign-owned enterprises, is designed to ease concerns among foreign companies about the difficulties they face operating in the world’s second-largest economy. Fast-tracked for approval at this month’s annual session of parliament, the law comes into effect on January 1, 2020.
It will ban forced technology transfer and illegal government “interference” in foreign business practices, according to the latest draft. The full text has not yet officially been released.
While previous drafts stipulated criminal punishment for officials who violated the law, a last minute revision detailed by state media this week has strengthened those clauses. — Reuters