Li: China will send ‘strong mes­sage of wel­come’ for FDI

China Daily (Hong Kong) - - FRONT PAGE - By XU WEI xuwei@chi­

China will strive to make it­self more invit­ing to for­eign di­rect in­vest­ment and for­eign tal­ent by widen­ing mar­ket ac­cess and im­prov­ing the busi­ness en­vi­ron­ment, ac­cord­ing to a de­ci­sion made on Fri­day at a State Coun­cil ex­ec­u­tive meet­ing presided over by Pre­mier Li Ke­qiang.

The neg­a­tive-list based mar­ket ac­cess regime for for­eign cap­i­tal, al­ready be­ing tried in the coun­try’s 11 free­trade zones, will be rolled out na­tion­wide as soon as pos­si­ble, and more sec­tors will be fur­ther opened for FDI, the meet­ing de­cided. Prof­its of for­eign-in­vested com­pa­nies will be guar­an­teed free flow out of China.

To make China more ap­peal­ing to for­eign tal­ent, the govern­ment will put in place an im­proved work per- mit sys­tem for for­eign­ers work­ing in China. De­tailed guide­lines for visa ap­pli­ca­tion and eval­u­a­tion bench­marks for widened ac­cess to for­eign tal­ent will be de­vel­oped in the sec­ond half of the year. Five- to 10-year mul­ti­ple-en­try visas will be is­sued to qual­i­fied ex­pa­tri­ates.

“The in­flow of for­eign cap­i­tal has been piv­otal for China to main­tain a rel­a­tively quick growth rate,” Li said. “Our in­dus­tries are in gen­eral at the lower end of the global value chain. We must send a strong mes­sage of wel­come to for­eign in­vest­ment.”

In­bound FDI fell by 0.1 per­cent year-on-year to 441.54 bil­lion yuan ($65.5 bil­lion) in the first half of this year, but the num­ber of newly launched for­eign en­ter­prises in China was up by 12.3 per­cent, ac­cord­ing to the Min­istry of Com­merce. In a sign of sta­bi­liz­ing FDI, the in­flow rose by 2.3 per­cent year-on- year in June to 100.45 bil­lion yuan.

Tax de­fer­ral will be ex­tended to for­eign in­vestors if their lo­cal prof­its are in­vested in pref­er­en­tial fields. The flow of FDI to the coun­try’s western and north­east­ern re­gions will re­ceive ex­tra sup­port.

“We must make sure the poli­cies cut­ting fees and taxes are fully im­ple­mented,” Li said.

The govern­ment will also im­prove the le­gal sys­tem in re­la­tion to for­eign in­vest­ment. For­eign cap­i­tal will be en­cour­aged in the re­struc­tur­ing of do­mes­tic en­ter­prises, and in­tel­lec­tual prop­erty rights of for­eign en­ter­prises will be bet­ter pro­tected.

“Re­lated govern­ment de­part­ments should de­velop ac­tion plans as soon as pos­si­ble and put these into ac­tion quickly, con­tin­u­ing to take China to new heights of open­ing-up and in­vest­ment,” Li said.

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