An ambitious new pilot scheme that allows foreign ownership of China’s hospitals is still a complicated procedure for overseas investors, writes Wang Jing
Acouple of months ago we witnessed a major breakthrough for healthcare services in China. In August, a pilot programme was announced which will allow foreign investors to establish wholly foreign-owned hospitals in seven cities and provinces. For the central government it’s a much needed boost towards its “20% by 2015” goal on private investment in hospitals. For foreign investors that wish to benefit from China’s booming healthcare sector, it’s also a welcome development. However, one should not underestimate the challenges facing China’s healthcare market.
This article provides an overview of the recent regulatory changes in the healthcare sector, and advice on the practical implications that multinational healthcare investors should bear in mind when considering activity in this sector.
Overview of foreign-invested institutions
It is fair to say that China’s healthcare market lags behind many other sectors in terms of the market-oriented reforms started more than 30 years ago.
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Wang Jing is a partner at Norton Rose Fulbright‘s Beijing office