Safeguarding People and the Environment in Chinese Investments: A Guide for Community Advocates

TitleSafeguarding People and the Environment in Chinese Investments: A Guide for Community Advocates
Annotated RecordNot Annotated
Year of Publication2017
PublisherInclusive Development International (IDI)
Place PublishedAsheville
Key themesHydropower, Safeguards

China has become one of the most important sources of foreign investments in the world. Chinese companies play various roles in overseas projects, from research and design, to construction, development and operation. Chinese financial institutions make many overseas projects possible by providing loans, foreign currency, insurance and equity investments. This investment brings with it potential benefits, but also human rights, social and environmental risks. Communities impacted by Chinese investments, and the civil society groups that seek to support them, often encounter difficulties obtaining project information, communicating with developers and financiers, and raising concerns or complaints. In response to this situation, state institutions, industry groups and an increasing number of Chinese companies and financiers have begun to adopt environmental and social standards for their overseas investments. This guide explains the key actors involved in Chinese overseas investments and describes the environmental and social standards and guidelines that apply. The guide also provides practical advice on how they can be used in advocacy with relevant Chinese actors and institutions. The guide includes a section focusing specifically on hydropower guidelines. Although the Chinese government has not issued specific guidelines for overseas hydropower projects, hydropower companies and financiers with projects overseas are subject to various guidelines discussed in the guide. These include: general principles and regulations issued by the Chinese government regarding outbound investment; guidelines and regulations for state-owned enterprises issued by the State-owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission; guidelines on environmental protection; and internal policies adopted by some of China's top hydropower developers, contractors and financiers.


Available for Download


China, Regional

Document Type


File for Download