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Premier Li meets the press: Full transcript of questions and answers

Ministry of Foreign Affairs | Updated: 2019-03-16 19:22

Channel NewsAsia of Singapore: The Foreign Investment Law has just been adopted at the NPC Session today. Yet there is also worry that the exceptional swift adoption of this piece of legislation is only in large measure a response to pressure from the United States. And the ambiguity of some legal provisions will only provide the Chinese government further wiggle room for self-discretion and lower investors' expectations of the actual effects of enforcement. How would you respond to this? What specific measures will the government take to ensure full enforcement of the law?

Premier Li: Opening-up is China's fundamental state policy. It has delivered real benefits to the Chinese people and has benefited the world. So why won't we go ahead with it? If we make a promise on opening-up, we will certainly deliver on it. For instance, last year, we lifted foreign ownership restrictions in some key basic industries. And we have seen the delivery of a big number of major projects in these respects. Last year, China remained the largest recipient of FDI among all developing countries. Going ahead, we will continue to carefully listen to the views from various parties and keep making China more open.

The just concluded NPC Session adopted the Foreign Investment Law. This piece of legislation is designed to better protect and attract foreign investment through legislative means. This law will also regulate government behaviors, requiring the government to perform its functions in accordance with the law. The government will introduce a series of matching regulations and directives to protect the rights and interests of foreign investors, such as on working mechanisms for handling complaints filed by foreign-invested enterprises. These will be the important things for the government to do in the following weeks and months to see that this law will be truly operable.

We will continue to implement a management system of pre-establishment national treatment plus a negative list. We will release a newly revised negative list which will become shorter. And going forward, we will further shorten our negative list, which means that more areas will be opened up for foreign investment. We will also enhance the protection of intellectual property. In this respect, we will make revisions to the laws on IPR protection and introduce a mechanism of punitive compensation to ensure that all infringements of intellectual property will be seriously dealt with and have nowhere to hide. We also hope that foreign governments can view in an objective light the cooperation between Chinese companies and their foreign partners based on mutual agreement. In a word, China will further open up, and China's opening-up measures will not come on a one-off basis, but will be introduced quarter after quarter and year after year. In hindsight, when we review the course of China's opening-up, we would realize how tremendous a change that has taken place in this country.

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