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8 major opening-up measures recently launched by China
Published on: 2018-05-10
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china 1000x547This year marks the 40th anniversary of China's groundbreaking reform and opening-up. On April 10, President Xi Jinping made a speech at the opening ceremony of the Boao Forum for Asia Annual Conference, reaffirming China's commitment to deepening reform and opening-up.

Let's take a look at a slew of substantial opening-up measures recently announced by China covering the financial, trade and investment fields.

Building a pilot free trade zone on the tropical island province of Hainan

030President Xi Jinping unveiled China's plan to turn the whole of Hainan Island into a pilot international free trade zone on April 13.

In the future, Hainan will become a pilot zone for comprehensively deepening reform and opening-up, a pilot zone for the country's ecological civilization, an international tourism and consumption center and a zone offering services and support for the country's major strategies.

China to phase out shareholding limits for foreign investors in manufacturing sectors

031China will scrap shareholding limits in the automobile, shipbuilding and airplane manufacturing sectors for foreign investors, the National Development and Reform Commission said on April 17.

Shareholding limits for special-purpose vehicles and new energy vehicles will be scrapped for foreign investors in 2018, while those for commercial vehicles and passenger vehicles will be lifted in 2020 and 2022 respectively.

The limits will be lifted this year on shipbuilding processes including design, manufacturing and repair, and on production of airplanes including trunk and regional airliners, general-purpose airplanes, helicopters, drones and aerostats.

China publishes master plan for Xiongan New Area

032Located around 100 kilometers southwest of downtown Beijing, the Xiongan New Area was set up in April last year to help spare Beijing of functions unrelated to its status as the nation's capital.

According to the document released on April 21, by 2035 Xiongan will basically develop into a modern city that is green, intelligent and livable, with relatively strong competitiveness and harmonious human-environment interaction.

By the middle of the century, it will become a significant part of the world-class Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei city cluster, effectively performing Beijing's non-capital functions and providing the Chinese solution to "big city malaise."

Tariffs cut to zero for many imported drugs

An employee of AstraZenecas plant in the United States inspects the production line of the lung cancer drug IressaChina announced it will exempt import tariffs on 28 drugs, including cancer drugs, from May 1 to fulfill its pledge to more widely open the Chinese market, according to a statement from the Ministry of Finance on April 23. Besides cancer drugs, cancer alkaloid-based drugs and imported traditional Chinese medicines are also on the list.

China expands quotas for outbound investment programs

033China will increase quotas for two pilot programs that allow domestic investors to access foreign assets, as part of its broader efforts to open up the financial market, the State Administration of Foreign Exchange said on April 24 in an online statement.

The quota for the Qualified Domestic Limited Partnership program in Shanghai and the quota for the Qualified Domestic Investment Enterprise program in Shenzhen will be expanded to $5 billion each, according to the statement.

China further opens banking, insurance sectors

035On April 27, China rolled out a set of measures to open its financial sector wider to the world, including expanding the business scope of foreign-funded banks.

The new rules allow foreign-funded banks to conduct business such as the underwriting of government bonds, and will lift foreign ownership limits on banks and financial asset management firms, the China Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission said in an online statement.

Foreign-funded insurance brokers will have the same business scope as their Chinese counterparts, according to the statement.

China releases rules to open securities sector to foreign investors

036On April 29, China released new management rules on foreign investment in the securities sector, as the government takes steady steps to open its financial sector wider.

The revised rules released by the China Securities Regulatory Commission allow foreign investors to take a controlling stake in joint-venture securities firms, and promise to gradually expand the business scope of such firms.

China will equalize foreign investors' equity shares in listed and unlisted securities companies according to the rules, which also set qualification requirements for overseas shareholders.

Mainland-HK stock connects to see hectic trading activity

034The daily northbound quotas for each of the Shanghai and Shenzhen stock connect programs will be expanded fourfold to 52 billion yuan from 13 billion yuan starting from May 1, People's Bank of China Governor Yi Gang told a panel discussion at the Boao Forum for Asia on April 11.

The daily quota for southbound trading, which allows investors in the Chinese mainland to buy Hong Kong stocks, will be boosted to 42 billion yuan from 10.5 billion yuan.

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