On March 18, 2012, the State-owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission (“SASAC”) issued the Interim Measures for the Supervision and Administration of Overseas Investment by Central Enterprises, which will take effect on May 1, 2012.  The measures govern the investment activities of Chinese state-owned enterprises and their subsidiaries in foreign countries, Hong Kong, Macao or Taiwan.  Under the measures, SASAC requires “central enterprises,” i.e. state-owned enterprises to which SASAC directly contributes capital, to establish an internal overseas investment management mechanism and formulate an annual overseas investment plan.   In principle, central enterprises are not permitted to engage in overseas investments in areas outside their core industries.  The measures require SASAC to carry out a record-filing for a key investment project that falls within a central enterprise’s core industry or issue a written objection to such an investment.  If an investment falls outside a central enterprise’s core industry, SASAC approval must be obtained before the investment may proceed.  Central enterprises also must report to SASAC if major changes occur during the execution of key investment projects. 

The full Chinese text of the interim measures is available here.