Chinese M&A at record levels

China’s outbound M&A activity has increased for the seventh year in a row, exceeding American foreign investment for the first time.

The country’s M&A volume increased by $US219 billion last year, meaning it accounted for more than half of Asia-Pacific’s outbound volume.

Experts predict that China will focus on strategic acquisitions in healthcare and tourism over the coming year. Australia’s mining industry is also tipped to see a surge in mergers and acquisitions.

Chinese acquirers were responsible for four of the top 10 deals, with the Asia-Pacific region accounting for half of global deal volume.

However, Chinese outbound investment is expected to be lower in 2017 following because of the government’s decision to respond to the falling value of the yuan and capital outflows by increasing regulatory scrutiny of overseas deals and major forex transactions.

America was last year the largest recipient of Chinese outbound foreign direct investment.

However, this may be curtailed by the election of Donald Trump, who has said that during his presidency the USA will take a tougher stance towards Chinese companies.