China overtook the United States as the world's top destination for foreign direct investment (FDI) in 2020, showing China's growing influence on the world economic stage, the BBC reported Monday.
Experts said the figures "underline China's move toward the center of the global economy which has long been dominated by the U.S., the world's biggest economy," said the BBC in its report, noting that the U.S. still dominates when it comes to total foreign investments.
"While the U.S. economy has been struggling since the COVID-19 outbreak last year, China's economy has picked up speed," the BBC said.
China became the world's largest FDI recipient in 2020, with flows to China rising by 4 percent to 163 billion U.S. dollars, according to a report published by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) on Sunday.
"A return to positive gross domestic product (GDP) growth and the (Chinese) government's targeted investment facilitation programme helped stabilize investment after the early lockdown," the report said.
Foreign direct investment into the U.S. recorded a 49 percent drop in 2020, falling to an estimated 134 billion U.S. dollars, said the report.
China saw its GDP increase 2.3 percent year on year last year and is expected to be the only major economy to post growth in the pandemic-ravaged year, according to the Chinese National Bureau of Statistics.