CCPIT Plays an Important Role in the “Belt and Road” Strategy Implementation
“Carryinground of highout qualitya new opening up” is one of the 8 impor tant works listed in the Government Work Report this year. How to make sure of the “going out” strategy will become key support to the national economic development? What role will the CCPIT play in the “Belt and Road” initiative? China’ s Foreign Trade gave an interview with Mr. Jiang Zengwei, chairman of the CCPIT and deputy chair of the 37th group of economic field of CPPCC, during the two sessions of 2016.
China’s Foreign Trade: Some Chinese companies have discussed and started trade cooperation with countries in the “Belt and Road” region, but met some difficulties in the process. What measures the CCPIT have taken or will take to safeguard the overseas business development of these Chinese companies?
Jiang Zengwei: China is carrying forward the “Belt and Road” initiative and “going- out” strategy, which is a very important strategic period of time. The complexity of the international env ironment has raised higher requirements for the quality of legal services of Chinese companies doing business overseas. To improve legal service and corporate rights protection under the “Belt and Road” framework will be a signif icant measure to implement national trade and economic strategy and involve our country into global trade regulation and governance. It is also an important approach to safeguard Chinese companies’ just rights and property safety overseas. The “Belt and Road ” initiative involves more than 60 countries in the world, and the political, cultural and historical diversity poses huge risks for Chinese trade companies. The lack of consistency in trade rules and legal execution, the complexity of bureaucratic procedures and delay of judicial cases will easily plunge unguarded Chinese companies into endless legal disputes. The difficulty to defuse commercial risks for Chinese companies, especially small and medium- sized companies, is very huge, because these companies lack effective measures to cope with the legal risks. They are in dire need of high quality legal services.
The legal services provided by legal research institutes and law firms for companies are so inadequate that they could not meet immediate demands of the companies. To solve the issue, the CCPIT will work out a legal service guidance and legal risk report covering countries of the “Belt and Road” region，to educate companies with basic knowledge of laws and prevent risks. The CCPIT is also committed to working with foreign legal service institutions to establish a legal service network cover ing t he “Belt a nd Road ” countries. What’s more, the CCPIT will make full use of the current multilateral and bilateral commercial and industry cooperation mechanism, to improve knowledge of policies of the “Belt and Road” countries, to promote the integration of the trade and economic laws in these countries.
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China-south Asia Business Council, China Committee of East Asia Business Council, CHINA-ASEAN Business Council, Bangladesh, China, India and Myanmar Business Council, China-arabia Coalition Business Council, China-africa Coalition Business Council, China-east and Middle Europe Coalition Business Council and Chinese Entrepreneurs Committee of Shanghai Cooperation Organization. The CCPIT has also established cooperation mechanisms with the business chambers and trade facilitation institutions of more than 20 countries, including Singapore, Russia, Mongolia and Iran. As a result, an industry and commerce cooperation network that covers major countries and regions in the “Belt and Road” initiative has taken into shape. To better play to the regional and industrial advantages within China, the CCPIT has set up 13 regional offices in 12 provinces to promote multilateral and bilateral industry and commerce cooperation mechanism.
By using the multilateral and bilateral cooperation mechanism platform, the CCPIT is committed to sharing trade and investment informat ion w ith cooperat ion institutions, organizing reciprocal visits, and co-organizing various trade and economic activities to provide trade and investment information and legal consultation services for companies, promote project docking and resolve t rade d isputes for
companies. These multiple- services have provided great support and guarantee for Chinese companies’ overseas business development.
China’s Foreign Trade: What policies shall be put in place to improve legal services and corporate rights protection for the “Belt and Road” region?
Jiang Zengwei: In my opinion, we shall strengthen the research on the legal rules and regulations of countries in the “Belt and Road ” region, to improve our legal services and corporate rights protection.
Authorities shall focus on the practical issues faced by Chinese investors when they make investments into the “Belt and Road” region, to improve research on the practical usage of trade and economic laws and regulations of the “Belt and Road” region. It shall encourage and support trade and investment facilitation institutions and professional legal institutions to involve into the research in the realm of foreign exchange rate, custom, tariff, land policy, labor and the environment in the countries of “Belt and Road” region. It shall collect information about the policy, legal regulation and standard concerning the investment target industries, and analyze those policies and rules that may hinder the cooperation trade and investment to reduce trade and investment barriers through dialogue and communications among governments.
The second is to improve legal services for trade companies doing business in countries of “Belt and Road”. The services include facilitating certificate issuance and identification and other custom clearance services, intellectual property rights service and trade dispute mediation and resolving. It shall play to the unique advantages of private groups, empower the lobbying capabilities in trade and investment, provide legal services against countries with rarely-spoken languages and develop a group of talents with deep knowledge of foreign languages and law. It shall provide trainings for the companies and improve companies’ awareness to prevent legal risks.
The third is to promote the formulation of regional trade rules in the “Belt and Road ” region. The authorities shall promote the regional integration of trade rules and understand corporate demands through t rade and investment facilitation institutions and social groups, to better promote regional trade rules negotiation, multilateral trade rule negotiation and carry forward the regional trade rule integration. Meanwhile, it shall make full use of regional cooperation mecha n ism, such a s Shangha i Cooperation Organization, China and ASEAN cooperation mechanism (10 + 1), APEC (Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation), Asia-europe Meeting, China- Arab States Cooperation Forum, China ASEAN Exposition, China Eurasia Exposition, and form a special commission to discuss trade law issues and explore trade dispute solutions suitable for countries in the “Belt and Road” region.
The last is to speed up the constr uction of investor rights protection system for the “Belt and Road” region. As laws and languages differ greatly country by country in the region and the costs for providing legal services are very high. The authorities shall increase financial support for small and medium-sized companies providing legal services, to improve their abilities to protect the rights of corporate investors.