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More foreign investment in service, manufacturing sectors

Updated: Mar 13,2016 2:02 PM     Xinhua

BEIJING — China will further ease foreign investors’ access to service and high-end manufacturing sectors, Minister of Commerce Gao Hucheng said on March 13.

Sectors of finance, education, culture and logistics will be opened wider to foreign capital, and restrictions on high-end manufacturing will be relaxed, Gao said on the sidelines of the annual parliamentary session.

Gao hoped foreign investment will help China’s state-owned enterprises innovate and upgrade.

China attracted a total of $126 billion of foreign capital in 2015, up 5.6 percent over the previous year, with service and high-end manufacturing sectors attracting over 70 percent of the total.

Foreign investors are shifting their focus to high-tech manufacturing and service sectors, Gao said, describing the phenomenon as a “structural improvement”.

Gao also expected the less-developed central and western regions to come to the front of opening up thanks to the implementation of the Belt and Road Initiative. “Those regions boast huge potential as only 16 percent of foreign investment went there in 2015,” Gao said.

China is formulating an investment catalogue to guide foreign investment in the regions and will build more trans-border economic cooperation zones, Gao added.

China has been encouraging foreign investment since its reform and opening up more than three decades ago.

China will work to “maintain strong appeal and serve as a favorite destination for overseas investment”, according to the government work report delivered by Premier Li Keqiang to national lawmakers for deliberation.