BEIJING — China’s four pilot Free Trade Zones (FTZ) have seen significant progress in attracting foreign investment with the help of financial reforms, the Ministry of Commerce (MOC) said during a press conference.
In the Jan- Sept period, the number of newly registered foreign-invested enterprises in the Shanghai FTZ rose 52.6 percent year on year while such entities more than tripled in the Guangdong, Tianjin, and Fujian province FTZs, according to the Ministry of Commerce (MOC) on Nov 4.
All together, 4,639 new foreign-invested enterprises were established in the four FTZs in the first nine months, attracting a total of 346.1 billion yuan ($54.6 billion) contracted foreign investment.
The introduction of the negative list system, which shows sectors and businesses that are off limits to foreign investment, helped motivate foreign investors, said MOC spokesperson Shen Danyang.
Financial innovations aimed at capital account convertibility and financial services diversification have seen steady progress while risk-control measures based on government data were put in place, Shen said.
The FTZs in Guangdong, Tianjin, and Fujian were officially launched on April 21 this year, 18 months after the first FTZ was inaugurated in Shanghai.
Officials expect the three new FTZs will further boost economic reform, promote trade and facilitate investment in new areas, as the world’s second largest economy moves away from its unsustainable export-dependent model.
By September, the number of newly registered market entities in the three FTZs more than doubled from a year ago to reach 45,000.