• Australia approves China takeover of construction firm

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    SYDNEY: Australian Treasurer Joe Hockey on Wednesday gave approval for China’s CCCC International Holding to buy construction firm John Holland in a deal worth a reported A$1.15 billion (US$881.8 million).

    CCCC International is a wholly owned subsidiary of the state-run China Communications Construction Company, the fourth-largest construction firm in the world by revenue.

    Part of global contractor Leighton Holdings, John Holland is one of Australia’s biggest engineering and construction firms, employing more than 5,600 workers in eight countries.

    “The government welcomes foreign investment where it is not contrary to our national interest,” Hockey said in a statement.

    “Foreign investment has helped build Australia’s economy and will continue to enhance the wellbeing of Australians by supporting economic growth and prosperity.”

    Hockey noted media reports about CCCC being debarred from World Bank contracts until January 2017 over fraud relating to road projects in the Philippines.

    “I have sought advice and action on these and other issues in relation to CCCC,” he said.

    “As a result, appropriate arrangements have been put in place to mitigate any concerns in relation to this issue and I am satisfied that this investment is not contrary to our national interest.”

    AFP

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