Chinese investment into eastern Europe reached its highest ever level in 2010 both in terms of project numbers and capital expenditure, according to data from fDiMarkets.

Figures recorded 30 projects in 2010, beating the record of 26 in 2005 and represented a steady increase on 2009 and 2008. In terms of capex, these projects were worth $4.01bn in total, the highest level since 2003 and nearly double the amount recorded in 2009.

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Analysts suggested that the increase in Chinese investment into the region is due to eastern European states increasingly advertising themselves to China after FDI from western Europe began to dry up. Costs are also significantly lower in eastern Europe following the financial crisis.

In recent project examples, Chinese car manufacturer Great Wall Motors announced plans to set up a new assembly plan in Bulgaria in an effort to solidify its position in the region. Fenchem, a Chinese food supplements company, opened a new office in Ostrava, Czech Republic and said it hopes to double its European turnover in three years.