China vows 'even higher level' of opening
Chinese President Xi Jinping pledged that China will open its doors only wider to the world.
"China will adhere to its fundamental state policy of opening-up and remains committed to opening-up to promote reform, development and innovation. This will bring opening to an even higher level," President Xi said at the opening ceremony of the second China International Import Expo on Tuesday.
"The huge Chinese market points to a potential that is simply unlimited," Xi said. "What I want to say to you today is that the Chinese market is so vast that you should all come and see what it has to offer."
China will better leverage the fundamental role of domestic consumption in economic development and foster a more robust domestic market in order to boost growth at home and create more room for global growth.
The country will attach greater importance to imports, continue to lower tariffs and institutional transaction costs, develop demonstration zones to promote import trade, and import more high-quality goods and services from around the world, according to Xi.
Xi pledged to take steps to promote balanced development of both imports and exports, and trade in goods and services. "This way, we will ensure a free yet orderly flow of both international and domestic factors of production, improve the efficient allocation of resources and deepen integration of markets."
Meanwhile, China will continue to optimize its opening-up structure.
"China's opening-up is all-dimensional and all-sectoral. A new structure of all-out opening-up is fast in the making," Xi said.
The country will continue to encourage bold trials and experiments in pilot free trade zones, and quicken the development of the Hainan free trade port. Hainan Province will be turned into a province-wide free trade port and become a pace-setter in the opening up of China.
"China will continue to implement a number of strategies that I mentioned regarding the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region, the Yangtze River Economic Belt, the Yangtze River Delta region, and the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macau Greater Bay Area," Xi said.
Xi also said that "we will draw up and improve a new national strategy for environmental protection and high-quality development in the Yellow River basin," with the purpose to seek greater synergy of opening-up among different parts of the country.
In addition, the business environment will be further improved in China, as Xi believes that a healthy business environment is one that provides the necessary conditions for enterprises to survive and thrive.
On October 24, the World Bank released its latest Doing Business report 2020, which ranks China 31 in the world, up from last year's 46th position.
Last month, China issued a new regulation on optimizing the business environment. Going forward, the country will continue to remove major constraints on economic development, gear up reforms in key areas and modernize governance capacity as an institutional support for high-standard opening-up and high-quality development.
"We will give foreign investments greater market access to more sectors, shorten the negative list further, and improve institutions for investment promotion and protection, and for information reporting," Xi said.
"With regard to IP protection, we will cultivate an environment that appreciates the value of knowledge, improve the legal framework, step up law enforcement, and enhance protection through both civil and criminal justice systems."
Xi also mentioned that China will continue to deepen multilateral and bilateral cooperation, saying the country will be happy to conclude high-standard free trade agreements with more countries.
"Looking forward, China will follow the new development approach and the strategy of innovation-driven development, and redouble our efforts to foster new growth drivers by shifting our growth model, improving the economic structure, and creating new growth momentum," Xi concluded.