Zhejiang takes actions to build a first-class business environment


Updated: May 16, 2019 Print
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In 2018, Hangzhou introduced 744 foreign-invested enterprises, with actual use of foreign capital reaching $6.827 billion, a growth of 3.28 percent year-on-year, and 224 foreign-invested projects with a total investment of more than $30 million.

575 foreign-invested enterprises were introduced in 2017, and the actual use of foreign capital was $6.61 billion. A total of 10 investment projects of the world's top 500 enterprises settled in the city, and a total of 208 projects received investments from 120 Fortune 500 companies.

In order to further optimize the local business environment, Hangzhou government issued the Opinions on deepening “one-stop” service reform and building a first-class business environment in Hangzhou in November 2018. The Opinions proposed a number of measures that will help prove the efficiency of government services and introduce foreign capitals to Hangzhou.

1.Improving the efficiency of investment project approval service

Comprehensively carrying out the pilot projects of the examination and approval system reform. Implementing the “1+9” supporting system to standardize the examination and approval process.

Before the end of June 2019, a system of approval, coordination, management, operation, and supervision of construction projects will be established as an example to the industry in the country. Before the end of 2020, the approval time for general enterprise investment projects from code filing to completion acceptance will be reduced to less than 80 days, and that for small projects will be reduced to less than 45 days.

The reform of the commitment system in investment projects will be accelerated with the standards set and supervision conducted by the government. Enterprises will be asked to keep promises so as to leave out the approval procedure.

Also, the reform of “standard land” will be deepened. 30 percent of the newly added land for industrial projects above provincial level will be supplied according to the standard land system before the end of 2018. 100 percent of the newly added land will be provided in accordance with the system.

2.Improve the level of opening up

Hangzhou will fully implement the pre-entry national treatment plus negative list management system, so that the "access door" of foreign capital can be more spacious and the establishment of foreign enterprises can be more convenient. Foreign businesses will enjoy the same project-related preferential policies and one-stop services as domestic ones.

When registering at the Industry and Commerce Department, foreign businesses will be asked to fill in one single form at one single service window. The establishment of business filings and industrial and commercial registration of foreign-funded enterprises shall be handled by “single window and single form”. Within three workdays, foreign-invested enterprises will get established or changed before the end of 2018.

The city will strive to boost the economic and cultural communication with Taiwan, as well as the strategic cooperation with Hong Kong in high-end service industry, aiming to build a cooperated cluster of high-end service industry.

3.Facilitate cross-border trade services

Import and export services in Hangzhou will be benchmarked against world-level services after trials and localization. The customs clearance process will be largely simplified. The overall customs clearance time of compressed goods will be cut by a third before the end of 2018, and another one third before the end of 2020.

The construction of “digital ports” is also the key in improving cross-border services. Before the end of 2018, the standard version of “single window” application for international trade will be thoroughly promoted throughout the city.

All international trade business will be processed through “single window” before the end of 2020. To build an optimal development ecosystem of global cross-border e-commerce, Hangzhou is about to cultivate and introduce more than 10 internationally competitive cross-border e-commerce platforms by 2020.

It will also promote the application of the "Internet + Convenience Tax Refund" system to improve the efficiency of tax rebates for cross-border enterprises, and to reduce the cost of taxation for export enterprises. By exploring the “self-certification” system under the B2B2C business model, the city will benefit local enterprises in collecting foreign exchange. With the construction of an e-commerce arbitration platform, Hangzhou will make efforts to improve the international arbitration mechanism for online trade.

4.Cultivate and attract talents

Boasting digital economy and high-tech industries, Hangzhou will prioritize talents in its development. By implementing a series of preferential policies, including the Thousand Talents Project proposed by Zhejiang province and the 521 Project initiated by the municipal government, Hangzhou will intensify its efforts in recruiting global talents and high-end young brains.

It will serve as an incubator for local academicians and entrepreneurs, as well as a bridge between local talents and international industries, striving to build a team of professionals capable of participating in international affairs.

To achieve these goals, the city will take actions in different aspects. A talent recommendation system and a market-oriented talent evaluation mechanism will be explored. College graduates will receive financial support from the government in areas such as taxation and residential allowances.

5.Upgrade public services

To meet the needs of everyday living for foreign talents, Hangzhou will deepen the education reform and implement the “Beautiful Education” three-year action plan. By 2020, the proportion of primary and secondary schools and kindergartens collectively managed as business groups will reach over 60 percent. It will ensure the healthy development of private education, and encourage complementary and orderly competition among public and private organizations. It will improve the foreign-related educational service system. By 2020, there will be eight schools established for children of foreign nationalities.

Moreover, the healthcare services will be advanced. By 2020, an international medical service system and an international medical fee settlement system will be established. There will be more than six international medical (medical treatment) centers by 2020.

Hangzhou will construct a highly advanced international community. In relaxing visa policies and performing exit and entry management reform, Hangzhou will provide fresh impetus to international communication and cooperation.

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