FUJIAN province, the base for Taiwan investment in China, says investment from the island continued to increase in the first two months of this year despite mounting tension across the strait. The vice-director of the province's Department of Foreign Trade and Economic Co-operation, Li Chaoyang, said in Hong Kong yesterday foreign investment in Fujian rose 40 per cent in the past two months compared with the same period last year. Hong Kong and Taiwan accounted for 70 per cent of the investment. Of that, more than 30 per cent was direct investment from Taiwan. 'Investment from Taiwan was unexpectedly good last year even though tension increased after [Taiwan President] Lee Teng-hui's visit to the United States in June,' he said. Foreign investment in Fujian was US$4.8 billion last year while its foreign trade reached $14.6 billion. Taiwan invested in 600 projects worth $1.8 billion, an increase of 90 per cent over 1994, Mr Li said. According to Taiwan's Investment Commission, the number of mainland projects approved by the island's authorities in January was down 27 per cent from January last year. The commission said 121 projects were shelved last year because of deteriorating relations between China and Taiwan. Mr Li said Taiwan's largest car-maker China Motor Corp had invested in more than 20 car component plants in Fujian, with investment in each plant ranging from $6 million to $30 million. The province would focus on industries such as petrochemicals, machinery, construction materials, forestry and aquatic products. Fujian planning commission director Yu Jinman said Fujian planned also to build a nuclear plant, with a capacity of four million megawatts. The project, in Huian, was still pending approval.