The Foreign Investment in Ningbo, East China’s Zhejiang Province, in April alone, hit $266 million, up 45.6 percent year-on-year despite the economic impact caused by COVID-19, according to Ningbo Municipal Bureau of Commerce.

Foreign investment by the city’s major investors, including the US, Singapore, Japan, and Italy, realised double-digit growth in April. Besides, the use of foreign investment from the US and Italy increased by 2.26 times and 3.48 times, respectively, and that from the Belt & Road Countries grew 73.96 percent year-on-year.

From January to April, the city used $1.126 billion foreign investment in total, with an increase of 1.5 percent year-on-year.

Actual investment in the manufacturing industry during the first four months of 2020 reached $523 million, accounting for 46.6 percent of the city’s total foreign investment, of which foreign investment used in the textile and apparel industry and the automobile manufacturing industry increased by 490.24 percent and 29.63 percent, respectively, year-on-year.

Statistics show that a total of 153 New Foreign Invested Enterprises were set up in the city during this period, 57 less than that of last year.

However, the total investment in these enterprises reached $4.419 billion with a contracted foreign investment of $1.284 billion, up 115.4 percent and 29.8 percent, respectively.

As of now, 66 overseas Fortune 500 companies have set up 144 investment projects in the city. For instance, German automaker Daimler AG set up a joint company with Chinese firm Geely in January with an investment of $2.21 billion to develop and produce the pure electric cars.

Reinvestment by profit has become a new driving force of Ningbo’s economy, the authority said. To attract more foreign investments, Ningbo has adopted a preferential tax policy that exempts the income tax of foreign enterprises, which infuse more investment in the city, out of their profits.

Such reinvestment in the first four months of the year increased to $284 million, up 305.3 percent, a record high.

China used foreign investment worth 286.55 billion yuan ($40.29 billion) from January to April, a 6.1 percent year-on-year decline due to the impact of COVID-19. However, in April, the foreign investment rose 11.8 percent year-on-year to 70.36 billion yuan.