China has become the largest investor in Montenegro: The secret where Beijing invested 70 million
Chinese investments involved investments in companies in Montenegro or their purchase, the purchase of real estate and so-called inter-company debt – companies from Montenegro borrowed money from companies from China.
People’s Republic of China has become the largest investor in Montenegro with 70 million euros in direct investments from the beginning of this year to the end of August, according to a Central Bank of Montenegro report published by newspaper Vijesti on Tuesday. The details of the Chinese investments are classified as confidential in the report.
From January to August, the total foreign investment amounted to 468 million euros, while in the same period last year it was 515 million euros.
This is the first time that China has been mentioned in the annual Central Bank report as a major foreign investor. In 2018 and 2019, it was not mentioned among the top 50 countries putting money into the country.
In 2017, China is on the list, but foreign direct investments from this largest Asian country amounted to only 676 thousand euros, and even then they were “confidential”.
No major Chinese investments are known in Montenegro, but among them could be the construction of wind farms on Mozura near Ulcinj, which was indirectly bought by the Chinese company “Shanghai Electric Power” through a company from Malta. This year’s report on foreign direct investment does not include Malta, while in recent years it was among the countries from which significant amounts came.
However it is known that the China Road and Bridge Corporation, CRBC, is building the first section of the Bar-Boljare highway, covered by loan from China’s Exim Bank.
The Chinese companies in Montenegro also need to start the reconstruction of the Plevlja thermal power plant.
Second on Montenegro’s foreign investments list is Italy with €43.3 million.
With 43.3 million euros invested, Italy was the second most important in terms of foreign direct investment. According to the Central Bank report, 7.9 million euros were invested through loans from Italian companies, while the remaining 35.4 million euros represented investments in Montenegrin companies and banks as well as the purchase of real estate. This is a significant increase in investments from Italy, as they amounted to only 6.7 million euros last year.
Russia was the largest investor in Montenegro last year, but is now in third place with 42.5 million euros invested. The Central Bank stated that 15 million euros of this represented loans from Russian companies, while 14.4 million was invested in real estate. The remaining 13 million euros from Russia represents investments in Montenegrin companies and banks and the return of capital, but details of these items have been declared confidential.
The fourth-largest investor in Montenegro was Switzerland with 37.3 million euros, mostly in borrowings from Swiss companies, while the United States invested 21.5 million euros.
In sixth place in terms of investment is the United Arab Emirates with 20.9 million, then Germany with 18.8 million, the Netherlands with 17.3 million, Serbia with 13.4 million, Estonia with 9.8 million…