China spreads financial goodwill throughout the world, including in Chicago

Chinese Commerce Minister Chen Deming (L) with Swiss Economy Minister Doris Leuthard (R). Xinhua News Agency
Chinese Commerce Minister Chen Deming (L) with Swiss Economy Minister Doris Leuthard (R). Xinhua News Agency

BY TIAN HUANG – MEDILL NEWS SERVICE

With the global economy slowing down, China, currently the world’s king of cash, is on a shopping spree around the globe and has been welcomed around the world for the much needed capital boost.

China has said it may spend around $2.2 billion in Europe alone. A Chinese business delegation signed trade deals worth more than $300 million with Swiss companies Thursday, $320 million with Spanish companies, and $14 billion with German companies.

Here in Chicago, John Bean Technologies Corp. landed a $14 billion contract from China, its second contract announcement with the Middle Kingdom in the last few days. Michael McCarthy, the director of research at Shapiro Capital Management LLC, said that in the current “challenging” environment, “[h]opefully, the company’s stimulus in China can make up its weak western business.”

Though some fear that China’s spending will threaten America’s position in the world economy, other analysts also greeted China’s spending as positive, especially in the energy field.

“It’s a good thing because a lot of projects have been postponed,” Prof. Philip Andrews-Speed, director of the energy policy center at the University of Dundee in Scotland, said in a New York Times article. “Oil companies may now have the money to produce oil.”

With the spending and a thorough stimulus plan domestically, Liu Tienan, vice minister of the National Development and Reform Commission, said today that he is confident China will meet its 8 percent growth target in 2009.

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