BEIJING — Chinese authorities have massively reduced the country’s logistics by canceling road tolls and encouraging Internet-based freight brokerage.
National logistics costs fell by 35.6 billion yuan ($5.3 billion) in H1, accounting for 45.5 percent of annual cost reduction goals, according to the Ministry of Transport.
The decrease was prompted by a number of measures, including the cancellation of certain road tolls in provincial-level regions and a pilot of Internet-based freight brokerages.
Fixed-asset investment in highways and waterways rose 23.8 percent year-on-year to 967.3 billion yuan in H1, more than half the annual investment goal of 1.8 trillion yuan.
Lowering logistics costs is part of China’s efforts to lower the corporate burden and economically upgrade.
The government has pledged to reduce taxes, clear fees and step up construction of national-level logistics hubs.
National Development and Reform Commission statistics show the cost of logistics in China took up 14.9 percent of the GDP in 2016, down by 1.1 percentage points year-on-year.
The ratio had dropped for four years in a row by 2016, but was still significantly higher than a number of developed and developing economies.
China ranked 27th in the 2016 Logistics Performance Index, created by the World Bank, covering 160 countries and regions.