BEIJING, Sept. 17 (Xinhua) -- China's non-financial outbound direct investment (ODI) maintained steady growth in the first eight months of the year, official data showed Tuesday.
Non-financial ODI in 159 countries and regions amounted to 493.09 billion yuan (about 70 billion U.S. dollars) in the period, up 2.7 percent year on year, according to the Ministry of Commerce.
During the first eight months, Chinese companies added a total of 8.97 billion dollars of investment in 53 countries participating in the Belt and Road Initiative, accounting for 12.4 percent of the total.
The structure of outbound investment continued to improve, with investment mainly going into sectors including leasing and business services, manufacturing, as well as wholesale and retail, according to the ministry.
No new projects in real estate, sports and entertainment were reported, the ministry said.
China's ODI has seen rapid growth in recent years. However, noting an "irrational tendency" in outbound investment, authorities have set stricter rules and advised companies to make investment decisions more carefully.
Big projects took the lion's share of the value of new deals. The number of newly signed overseas projects with a contract value exceeding 50 million dollars came in at 468 during the first eight months, up by six from a year earlier.
The value of infrastructure projects reached 110 billion dollars, accounting for 85.1 percent of the newly signed contracts.
Major overseas projects were bringing mutual benefits. By the end of last month, Chinese companies had provided 813,000 jobs for local people, the ministry added.