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Foreign firms to gain wider market access

By Cao Desheng and Zhong Nan | China Daily | Updated: 2019-05-29 10:27
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The central business district in Beijing on Sept 7, 2018. [Photo/VCG]

President pledges further opening to build first-class business climate

China will widen market access to foreign capital in broader fields and actively build a first-class business environment, President Xi Jinping said on Tuesday.

Xi made the remarks in a congratulatory message to the 2019 China International Fair for Trade in Services, which opened in Beijing on Tuesday.

China remains committed to promoting opening-up at an even higher level, Xi said, and the country firmly upholds the multilateral trading system.

With the acceleration of economic globalization, trade in services has increasingly become an important part of international trade and a key area in economic and trade cooperation among countries, Xi noted, adding that it has injected fresh impetus into the global economy.

Mentioning that trade in services has broad prospects and huge potential for development, he urged countries to seize the opportunity and join hands to build a better future of global services for mutual benefit and shared growth.

China stands ready to intensify cooperation with various countries on trade in services and investment, enhance liberalization and facilitation of trade and investment, and push for economic globalization to develop in an open, inclusive, mutually beneficial, balanced and win-win manner, Xi said.

He expressed the hope that participants in the five-day event will strengthen their cooperation to promote the growth of global trade in services and guide global economic development in order to benefit the people of all countries and advance the building of a community with a shared future for mankind.

Formerly the China (Beijing) International Fair for Trade in Services, the fair aims to have global influence and lead the innovative development of domestic and global trade in services.

The theme of the fair is Opening-up, Innovation, Intelligence and Integration. Enterprises and organizations from 137 countries and regions are taking part in the event.

Trade in services refers to the sale and delivery of intangible products such as transportation, tourism, telecommunications, construction, advertising, computing and accounting.

"China has already taken steps to improve the development of trade in services, including gradually opening up the finance, education, culture and medical treatment sectors, as well as introducing the first new negative list for cross-border service trade in the China (Shanghai) Pilot Free Trade Zone last year to offer global companies more access," said Bai Ming, a senior researcher at the Chinese Academy of International Trade and Economic Cooperation.

Eager to compete with their global counterparts, Bai said Chinese cities such as Shenzhen, Hangzhou and Wuhan are also innovating and diversifying service trade, including spearheading the development of digital service trade and promoting digital service outsourcing.

China has trade in services with more than 200 countries and regions. Its service trade volume reached 1.29 trillion yuan ($186.81 billion) in the first quarter of this year, up 2.6 percent year-on-year, while its service export volume topped 463.49 billion yuan, up 10.3 percent, according to the Ministry of Commerce.

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