Britain announced on Friday that it would sign commercial deals with China valued over $3.9 billion at Chancellor George Osborne’s London meeting with Chinese Vice Premier Ma Kai, reports Reuters. The meeting occurred during the first ever UK-China Bilateral Investment Conference as part of the annual Anglo-Chinese economic and financial dialogue.

Although full details are not yet available, Britain’s finance ministry released information on some of the deals including a $1 billion UK-China joint venture investment in a Malaysian oil terminal and a nursing home and vocational training school development project in China worth over $325 million.

The BBC reports that additional deals include Chinese investment in UK golf courses, healthcare, and shipping, and British investment in Chinese websites and rail infrastructure. The UK also announced that it would refund the cost of tourist visas for some 25,000 Chinese visitors.

The refund will apply to tourists who visited Britain through organized tour groups. Moving forward, pre-approved tour groups will also be exempt from transit visa requirements. Osborne hopes these measures will encourage Chinese to visit the UK and utilize British airports in international travel. “The more Chinese tourists, the merrier,” he said.

These changes will be bolstered by more flights between the UK and China, with the UK planning to spend over $2.6 million in tourism advertising in China, according to the BBC article.

(Photo by Jaume Escofet via Flickr)

Posted by Ellen Huber