China says it is ramping up efforts to bolster the stability of foreign investment by promoting work resumption of foreign-funded firms and projects as well as opening wider to foreign investors.
According to the Ministry of Commerce, 60 per cent of major foreign-invested manufacturing firms and over 40 per cent of key foreign-funded service providers out of Hubei Province has recovered over 70 per cent of work capacity as of March 12.
The Ministry said that Chinese authorities had vowed to further facilitate the work resumption of foreign firms.
The National Development and Reform Commission also said that efforts should be made to address the difficulties in work resumption to help firms return to full capacity at the earliest possible time and advance major foreign-invested projects.
While the Ministry stressed measures to enhance firms’ sense of gain, adding that the country is beefing up wider opening-up to foreign investment.
“Revision of the negative list on foreign investment is underway as part of the plan to shorten the negative list and expand the catalogue of industries where foreign investment is encouraged.
“The country will continue improving the business environment and enhancing the stability of foreign investment.”
Ye Wei, an official with the ministry, said that foreign-invested companies in China were regaining confidence supported by a string of opening-up measures, despite the impact of the epidemic.
Ye said retail giant Costco, for example, has announced to open a second store on the Chinese mainland in Shanghai, while Starbucks would build a coffee innovation park in eastern China’s Jiangsu Province.
Zhang Fei with the Chinese Academy of International Trade and Economic Cooperation (CAITEC) said that new editions of the list on foreign investment would probably be released in May.
“The list will be probably expanding market access of the tertiary sector, such as health care, aged service, finance, transportation, logistics, tourism, education, training and value-added services of telecommunications.”
Zhang also noted that foreign enterprises were focusing on opportunities in the industries of biomedicine, public health, artificial intelligence, 5G network and industrial Internet as demands emerged amid the epidemic.
Also a researcher with CAITEC, Pang Chaoran, said China would accelerate the opening of industrial and supply chains with weak links.
“As well as encourage investment to better meet the needs of domestic consumption upgrade and support firms to invest in the central, western and north-eastern regions.