China's appetite for corporate acquisitions is propelling it to the forefront of global deal-making. Tara Joseph reports.
China is stepping up its global shopping spree. Armed with piles of cash, but facing slowing growth at home, deal-hungry Chinese firms are snapping up huge numbers of overseas companies from real estate to chemicals to tech. (SOUNDBITE) (English) TARA JOSEPH, REUTERS REPORTER, SAYING: "China's overseas buying binge isn't exactly new - recent deals have included French vineyards, US movie theatres and European soccer teams... But the amount of money being spent is now reaching jaw-dropping levels. So far this year, Chinese firms have done deals abroad worth more than 130 billion dollars - almost 4 times the total in the previous six months." If that's not enough, it looks like the biggest purchase of all is yet to come... State owned ChemChina is eyeing up a takeover of Swiss pesticides group Syngenta... If they can pull that off, it'll be China's largest foreign acquisition ever - with a pricetag of 43 billion dollars. The deal had been hinging on U.S. National Security concerns over the global food supply... But it's been given the green light pending a last look by European regulators. Like many Chinese acquisitions the deal focuses on moving up the high tech value chain... matching Beijing's vision of shifting from cheap manufacturing toward a more sophisticated economic model... While upping China's power and influence over some of the most significant industries in the world.