Full Coverages>China>2004 NPC & CPPCC>Constitutional Revision

China's Constitution amendments welcomed by foreign business people
By (Xinhua)
Updated: 2004-03-14 17:11

A word change in the draft amendments to the Constitution submitted to the second annual session of the Tenth National People's Congress (NPC) has won approval from foreign business people in China.

In the draft amendments, the original provision that "the State protects the lawful rights and interests of the private sector of the economy and exercises guidance, supervision and control over the private sector of the economy" is proposed to be revised as "the State protects the lawful rights and interests of the non-public economy and encourages, supports and guides the non-public economy."

"The difference between the private sector of the economy and the non-public economy is only one word in Chinese, but the difference in meaning is significant as the rights and interests of foreign capital hereby get constitutional protection," said Wang Maolin, vice-chairman of the Law Committee of the NPC.

As a businessman from China's Taiwan, Zhao Shichong, president of Shanghai Yishi Business Consulting Co. ltd. is encouraged by this change.

"The one-word change brings all foreign capital and capital from Taiwan under the protection of the constitution, which reassures me for a long-term investment," said Zhao.

Investing in Shanghai for over 10 years in several fields including restaurants, entertainment and business consultation, Zhao has become a symbol of successful businessmen in this eastern municipality marked by its booming economy.

"China's mainland has offered golden opportunities for the rapid development of Taiwan-invested enterprises. The improvement of the law environment will help to maintain such a trend," said Zhao.

Xian Jiang, general manager of GTJA-Allianz Funds who has had an 11-year career of foreign capital management, made a careful study of the provision on the non-public economy.

"Since the 1980s, China has witnessed soaring investment from overseas, which has boosted the economic development of the country. Now China's move in writing the protection of foreign investment into the Constitution will promote more capital from overseas to flow into China," said Xian.

Such a change has drawn close attention from foreign investors. Dr. von Canstein, general president of Allianz Dazhong Life Insurance Co. ltd., considers that the change signals another great move in the sustaining improvement of China's law environment.

"It is undoubtedly good news for us foreign investors," said von Canstein.

Seeing the business of Allianz-Dazhong in China increasing tenfold each year since it opened five years ago, von Canstein has extended his working term in China.

"China has not only fulfilled its promises on entering the WTO but also made amendments to the Constitution to provide guarantees for foreign capital, that's why I continue my term in China," said Canstein.

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