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China's achievements in opening-up over past 10 years

Updated: May 16, 2022 chinadaily.com.cn Print
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China has proactively promoted opening-up and made a series of significant achievements over the past 10 years, according to Vice-Minister of Commerce Wang Shouwen.

The quality and capability of furthering China's opening-up have enhanced substantially with achievements in trade and investment, institutional opening-up, free trade zones and ports, FTZs promotion strategies and global economic governance. Let's take a closer look.

1. Achievements of opening-up in trade and investment

Containers await shipping at a port in Xiamen, Fujian province. [Photo by WANG XIEYUN/CHINA DAILY]

China's total trade in goods and services grew from $4.4 trillion in 2012, second in the world, to $6.9 trillion in 2021, ranking first in the world for two consecutive years.

The country's two-way investment also ranks among the top in the world, attracting 1.15 trillion yuan ($170 billion) of foreign capital last year, an increase of 62.9 percent over 2012.

Since 2017, China has ranked second in the world in attracting foreign investment for four consecutive years, with the foreign investment flow ranking among world's top three. Belt and Road economic and trade cooperation has also been promoted.

2. Institutional opening-up

An aerial view of the container dock of the Qinzhou Port section of China (Guangxi) Pilot Free Trade Zone in Qinzhou, South China's Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region. [Photo/Xinhua]

China launched the first negative list of foreign investment access in the Pilot Free Trade Zones with 190 restrictive measures in 2013. Now the restrictive measures have been cut to just 27 items.

The management model of the negative list for foreign investment was promoted nationwide in 2016 and the restrictive measures were reduced from the original 93 items to the current 31.

With the implementation of the Foreign Investment Law in 2020, a new foreign investment management system was launched. The first negative list for cross-border trade in services was launched in South China's Hainan province in 2021, bringing China's institutional opening-up to a new level.

3. Free trade zones and ports

A view of Sanya Bay in Hainan province. [Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn]

A total of 21 pilot free trade zones have been established since the first was established in Shanghai in 2013, with 278 institutional innovations replicated and promoted nationwide.

The construction of Hainan Free Trade Port was launched in 2018 and more than 120 institutional innovation achievements have been launched so far.

4. FTZs promotion strategies

Benjamas Tanvetyanont, right, consul-general of Thailand in Nanning, Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region, promotes products via livestream in Nanning on March 28. [Photo/China Daily]

The number of free trade agreements China has signed with its trade partners has increased from 10 to 19 in the past 10 years, and the proportion of China's trade volume with free trade partners to its total trade amount increased from 17 percent to 35 percent last year.

RCEP officially came into effect this year, launching the world's largest free trade zone with the largest population and largest economic and trade scale.

China is also actively promoting its accession to the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership and the Digital Economy Partnership Agreement.

5.Global economic governance

China promoted reaching an agreement for the Beijing Roadmap for APEC's Contribution to the Realization of the Free Trade Area of the Asia-Pacific by 21 members in 2014. This drew a blueprint for the establishment of a high-level free trade area in the Asia-Pacific region.

China also promoted the establishment of the G20 Guiding Principles for Global Investment Policymaking at the 2016 G20 Hangzhou Summit, which laid the foundation for the WTO's investment facilitation initiative in 2017.

China has also actively participated in the reform of the WTO and firmly safeguarded the multilateral trading system.

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