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More steps to promote foreign trade

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An aerial view of a port in Nantong, Jiangsu Province on July 8, 2021. [Photo/for China Daily by Zhai Huiyong]

Focus will be on infrastructure, unused business formats, technology and services in 2021-25

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China will urge pilot free trade zones (FTZs) and comprehensive depository zones to build global supply warehouses and transportation hubs during the 14th Five-Year Plan period (2021-2025), in order to motivate unused forms and models of foreign trade, a government official said Tuesday.

With China and its partners pushing for the operationalization of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement next year and preparing to join the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for the Trans-Pacific Partnership, it is required that the country establish such facilities in these regions, said Li Kuiwen, director general of the General Administration of Customs” Department of Statistics and Analysis of Hainan Free Trade Port.

New forms and models of foreign trade refer to a group of businesses such as cross-border e-commerce, market procurement, comprehensive foreign trade service providers, deposit maintenance, foreign trade and foreign warehouses, according to information from the GAC and the Ministry of Commerce.

At a meeting to introduce the management plan for 2021-25, Li said the government will urge the use of unused technologies and tools to enable foreign trade, support the sound growth of integrated service providers, enhance bonded maintenance work, and promote foreign trade. and facilitate specialized service platforms.

Under the GAC’s five-year plan, the government will aid companies conduct filing area research and development, product testing, repair and remanufacturing work within the free trade zones and comprehensive filing zones, and introduce unused forms of procedures to facilitate customs clearance for companies engaged in positive businesses. Such as cross-border e-commerce, overseas procurement and warehouse trade.

In addition to accelerating the negotiation process involving customs issues of bilateral and multilateral free trade deals, such as the China-Japan-Republic of Korea Free Trade Agreement, the administration will call on companies to promote and expand general trade, increase the proportion of processing trade in the country’s foreign trade, and direct companies to enhance value-added, Strengthening the bargaining power of companies and the bargaining power in the coming years.

The administration said China’s general trade reached 11.19 trillion yuan ($1.73 trillion) in the first half of this year, up 31 percent year on year, accounting for about 62 percent of the country’s whole foreign trade value.

The import and export of processing trade increased 15.8 percent year on year to 3.89 trillion yuan, accounting for 21.5 percent of China’s foreign trade volume.

As freight train services between China and Europe have shown distinguished advantages and become a force in stabilizing trade between China and the partners participating in the Belt and Road Initiative, the GAC will strengthen cooperation with customs authorities in other countries. This should support the upgrade of domestic and foreign railway service assembly centers from points to hubs, in order to transport more goods and create unused jobs, Li said.

In the first half of the year, 7,377 freight trains were operated between China and Europe and 707,000 standard packing boxes of goods were shipped, up 43 percent and 52 percent year on year, respectively.

The proportion of overall loaded containers reached 98 percent, according to data from China State Railway Group Co., Ltd.

Customs figures showed that China’s imports to and exports of BRI-related economies totaled 209.78 billion yuan, in terms of rail transport in the first half, up 43 percent year on year.

Lu Renjian, a researcher with the Transportation Research Institute of the National Development and Reform Commission, said freight trains between China and Europe have provided alternatives in transportation, bolstering the global fight against the COVID-19 pandemic that has disrupted international air and sea transportation.

The product categories carried by freight trains are expanding, from laptop computers and related parts in the start to more than 50,000 items today, including automobiles, chemical products, mechanical and medical supplies, as well as all kinds of merchandise from online retailers, data from GAC showed. .


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