More in­cen­tives for im­ports to meet high con­sump­tion de­mand

Shanghai Daily - - TOP NEWS - (Xin­hua)

CHINA will an­nounce a slew of in­cen­tives to boost im­ports for do­mes­tic in­dus­trial up­grad­ing and bet­ter meet the in­creas­ingly di­ver­si­fied con­sump­tion de­mands of peo­ple, the State Coun­cil de­cided at an ex­ec­u­tive meet­ing chaired by Premier Li Ke­qiang yes­ter­day.

These mea­sures are ex­pected to ad­vance China’s win-win strat­egy of open­ing-up. Ex­pand­ing im­ports while keep­ing ex­ports sta­ble will help raise sup­ply qual­ity and up­grade con­sump­tion.

The Chi­nese govern­ment puts great em­pha­sis on boost­ing im­ports. Li stated in the govern­ment work re­port in March that China will ac­tively ex­pand im­ports and lower im­port tar­iffs on goods such as au­to­mo­biles and ev­ery­day con­sumer prod­ucts to pro­mote in­dus­trial up­grad­ing and more bal­anced de­vel­op­ment of trade and fur­ther di­ver­sify con­sumer choices.

China has made no­table achieve­ments in for­eign trade since re­form and open­ing-up. The coun­try has been the world’s largest ex­porter and sec­ond-largest im­porter of goods for nine con­sec­u­tive years, and is now the world’s largest im­porter of en­ergy re­sources.

“Ex­pand­ing im­ports is cru­cial for up­hold­ing free trade. Pri­or­ity should be given to meet­ing needs of ev­ery­day life and boost­ing trade in ser­vices,” Li said. “Our deficit in ser­vices trade may be turned into a cat­a­lyst for the up­grad­ing of the ser­vices sec­tor.”

The meet­ing de­cided that more sup­port will be given to im­port­ing daily con­sumer goods, medicine, as well as nurs­ing and re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion fa­cil­i­ties to meet de­mand of con­sump­tion up­grad­ing and im­prove sup­ply qual­ity. The govern­ment will also cut im­port tax on par­tic­u­lar goods and re­duce in­sti­tu­tional pro­ce­dures and un­rea­son­able price in­crease, so that con­sumers can ben­e­fit from these im­port duty cuts.

Trade in emerg­ing ser­vices will be boosted, and im­ports of pro­ducer ser­vices cov­er­ing re­search and de­sign, trade lo­gis­tics, con­sult­ing ser­vices, en­ergy con­ser­va­tion and en­vi­ron­men­tal pro­tec­tion will be en­cour­aged.

Poli­cies on duty-free shops will be made more flex­i­ble with more du­tyfree prod­ucts in­tro­duced and shop­ping ex­pe­ri­ences im­proved. Im­ports of tech­no­log­i­cal fa­cil­i­ties for do­mes­tic in­dus­trial up­grad­ing will be sup­ported.

The meet­ing also calls to op­ti­mize cus­toms clear­ance pro­ce­dures and pro­mote Au­tho­rized Eco­nomic Oper­a­tor mu­tual recog­ni­tion with other coun­tries to bet­ter fa­cil­i­tate im­ports. New ap­proaches to im­ports were called for at the meet­ing, and cross-bor­der e-com­merce trade will be fur­ther de­vel­oped.

At the same time, a credit in­for­ma­tion sys­tem in for­eign trade as well as en­hanced in­tel­lec­tual prop­erty rights pro­tec­tion are needed so that for­eign trade and for­eign in­vest­ment will com­ple­ment one an­other.

“Our ini­tia­tive of boost­ing im­ports demon­strates China’s com­mit­ment to a new round of high-stan­dard open­ing up, to eco­nomic re­struc­tur­ing, and to eco­nomic trans­for­ma­tion and high-qual­ity de­vel­op­ment,” Li said.

The April sta­tis­tics show for­eign trade in goods to­taled 6.75 tril­lion yuan, up 9.4 per­cent year on year, and the trade sur­plus dropped 21.8 per­cent.

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