While the recently released Fortune Global 500 includes dozens of perennial standbys, this year the increasing presence of Chinese firms really stands out. With a record 54 Chinese firms included in the list, including three -- Sinopec, State Grid Corp of China and China National Petroleum Corp. -- in the top 10, this year's rankings reflect the growing global presence of China Inc.
The overall number of Chinese firms on the list increased to 54 from last year's 43, among which are eight from Taiwan -- making China the third largest country for Fortune 500 companies, following only the United States and Japan.
"The new ranking is a good demonstration of China's rapid economic growth," said Sun Lijian, a finance professor at Fudan University. "The global economic gravity has increasingly slanted toward emerging markets, China in particular."
However, as the article -- like others -- points out, the vast majority of the Chinese firms included in this year's list are monolithic, state-owned enterprises, illustrating the difficulties faced by Chinese SMEs both in China and on the world stage.