China supporting cross-border e-commerce

Huang Yixuan
General Administration of Customs spokesman says China customs has been adapting to and promoting the development of cross-border e-commerce and supporting its development.
Huang Yixuan

China is to improve the regulatory mechanism to support the development of cross-border e-commerce, customs said on Thursday.

Due to COVID-19, cross-border e-commerce has rapidly developed as a new business form in 2020, said Li Kuiwen, spokesman for the General Administration of Customs and head of its statistics and analysis department.

Cross-border e-commerce saw imports and exports increase during the pandemic, becoming an important force in stabilizing foreign trade.

"China customs has been actively adapting to and promoting the development of cross-border e-commerce, continuously innovating and optimizing the regulatory system, and supporting the orderly development of new business forms such as cross-border e-commerce," Li said.

For instance, it has promoted the regulatory measures for the return of goods in cross-border e-commerce exports, which solves difficulties in returning goods and supports local e-commerce exporters to "sell globally" with better after-sales services.

It has also improved measures for returning goods imported by cross-border e-commerce retailers.

Meanwhile, innovative pilot projects on cross-border e-commerce's business-to-business (B2B) exports have been launched. 

The customs has set two new trade modes, on which the pilot projects have so far been launched in 22 directly affiliated customs offices, including Beijing.

This can help spread innovative achievements in cross-border e-commerce regulation from B2C to B2B, with supporting measures to facilitate customs clearance, Li said.

The pilot enterprises may apply such facilitation measures as one-time registration, one-point docking, priority in inspection, and easier return of goods.

In order to reflect the overall import and export situation of cross-border e-commerce, the customs has set up a new statistical system for the industry.

According to preliminary customs statistics, in 2020, China’s cross-border e-commerce imports and exports added up to 1.69 trillion yuan (US$261.4 billion), up by 31.1 percent, of which exports surged 40.1 percent to total 1.12 trillion yuan, while imports rose 16.5 percent to 0.57 trillion yuan.

In the next step, the customs will keep focusing on the development of new business forms and the concerns of enterprises, continue to strengthen supervision, improve services, and further improve the regulatory and statistical systems.

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