Nansha District, Guangzhou comprehensively deepens regional economic and trade cooperation with ASEAN

September 20 17:24 2022

On September 16, three months after the release of the Overall Plan for Promoting Comprehensive Cooperation among Guangdong, Hong Kong and Macao by Further Deepening Opening-up in Nansha District of Guangzhou (Overall Plan of Nansha) by the State Council, Nansha District held a special session on international economic cooperation and trade under the Overall Plan of Nansha for promoting high-standard opening up during the 19th China-ASEAN Expo (CAEXPO). Under the theme of “Towards the World, and New Starting Point”, Nansha focuses on showcasing the achievements of Nansha Demonstration Zone of Creative Promotion of Import Trade in international economic cooperation and trade, displaying the improving multimodal transport services, and comprehensively launching economic and trade cooperation with business associations in ASEAN member states.

At the event, the Nansha District Bureau of Commerce signed a memorandum of understanding on fostering exchanges and cooperation with the Indonesian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (“KADIN”), the Guangdong Enterprise Confederation of Business Association of China in Vietnam (hereinafter referred to as “Guangdong Business Association”), the Thai-Chinese Chamber of Commerce and Thailand Trade Commission’s Cross-border Trade and Border Trade Committee (hereinafter referred to as “Thai Chamber of Commerce and Thailand Trade Commission”), and the Lao National Chamber of Commerce and Industry, respectively. Chen Junyi, member of the Party Group and Deputy Director General of the Bureau of Commerce of Nansha Economic and Technological Development Zone of Guangzhou, signed the memorandum of understanding with the representatives of the aforesaid chambers of commerce. Also present at the ceremony were Ye Yinlong, deputy director of the Trade Development Bureau of the Ministry of Commerce; Li Feng, deputy director of the Guangzhou Municipal Commerce Bureau’s International Investment Promotion Center; Adhi Kawidastra, consul for economic affairs of the Consulate General of Indonesia in Guangzhou; Xie Xiaohui, vice chairman of the CPPCC Nansha District Committee and director of the Commerce Bureau; Li Fangqi, deputy chief economist of the Administration Committee of Nansha Development Zone; and Wang Qiyuan, second-level senior inspector of Nansha Customs.

It is learned that the KADIN is the only national business organization lawfully established in Indonesia that represents the interests of private enterprises. The Guangdong Business Association is the cooperation platform for Cantonese businesses established under the guidance of China Council for the Promotion of International Trade Guangdong Committee. The Thai Chamber of Commerce and Thailand Trade Commission is the central coordinating body for the government and the private sector, mainly responsible for formulating trade rules and regulations, providing business consulting services, etc. The Lao National Chamber of Commerce and Industry is the largest and most representative chamber of commerce representing the Lao business community. For a long time, these associations have contributed to economic and trade cooperation between China and Indonesia, between China and Vietnam, between China and Thailand, and between China and Laos. In particular, these serve as an important cooperation and communication platform for local enterprises to enter China and for Chinese enterprises to “go global” over 9 years since the inception of the Belt and Road Initiative.

Xie Xiaohui said that the signing of memorandums of understanding on closer exchanges and cooperation with four associations through the CAEXPO is of great significance for Nansha to respond to the development needs of countries and regions related to the Belt and Road Initiative, foster international economic cooperation and trade, and help enterprises participate in cooperation in international industrial chain. In the future, on the basis of the RCEP, it will work with Indonesia, Vietnam, Thailand, Laos and other ASEAN member states to deepen cooperation and coordinate development, promote the cooperation for and development of Nansha Demonstration Zone of Creative Promotion of Import Trade, publicize and promote China-ASEAN import and export trade, and promote the building of China-ASEAN common market. Adhi Kawidastra said that the event would help promote Nansha as a hub for the Greater Bay Area to import goods from ASEAN member states, establish ties with countries under the Belt and Road Initiative, and even use the RCEP to strengthen economic cooperation between ASEAN and China as a whole.

Picture: Legal services cluster

Building a platform: serving overseas enterprises in entering China and Chinese enterprises “going global”

Nansha District has been committed to providing a full range of services for enterprises making overseas investment. It has made breakthroughs in building a comprehensive service base for Chinese enterprises to “go global”. It promotes the pioneering demonstration services for international legal services. More than 30 legal service institutions have settled in the Belt and Road legal services cluster. It promotes the establishment of China’s first special zone for international talents, and has been approved as the national offshore innovation and entrepreneurship base for overseas talents. It vigorously enhances the level of financial opening and innovation hub, establishes Guangzhou’s first national-level financial infrastructure known as Guangzhou Futures Exchange (GFEX), and operates China’s first pilot program for cross-border trade and investment and high-standard opening up. It further articulates with the Hong Kong and Macao in terms of rules and mechanism, builds a one-stop service platform for professional titles and vocational qualifications in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area, and creates an innovation and entrepreneurship platform suited to Hong Kong and Macao. The Nansha Guangdong-Hong Kong Cooperation Advisory Committee with CPPCC’s Vice Chairman Leung Chun-ying as the adviser, has been established. It brings together more than 20 Hong Kong chambers of commerce and industry. Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (Guangzhou) and the first non-profit Minxin Hong Kong School (Guangzhou Nansha) in the mainland opened in September. Hong Kong and Macao Youth Wule Service Center has been fully launched. It moves faster to build a new platform for international exchanges, holds activities such as the Greater-Bay Science Forum, the Annual Meeting of the International Finance Forum, and the CNBC East Tech West, and promotes the building of a comprehensive service base for “going global”.

Picture: Nansha New Area of China (Guangdong) Pilot Free Trade Zone

A new chapter: progress in foreign exchanges, economic and trade cooperation

Nansha District is an important node for domestic and international circulations. In addition to the world-renowned Nansha Port, it boasts a comprehensive bonded zone, Nansha Demonstration Zone of Creative Promotion of Import Trade and other major foreign economic and trade platforms, and also benefits from policies such as RCEP and CPTPP. The Overall Plan of Nansha released in June this year marked a new beginning for Nansha’s opening up. In addition, the competent departments at all levels of Guangdong Province and Guangzhou City have increased guidance and support by issuing policies such as Ten Working Mechanisms on Supporting and Serving Extraordinary Measures for Extraordinary Matters for Nansha in Guangzhou, Supporting Measures of Nansha Development Zone to Promote the Development of Foreign-Funded Enterprises, Nansha District Policy and Measures for Stable Foreign Trade 2022, and Policy and Measure for Nansha District, Guangzhou to Build Demonstration Zone of Creative Promotion of Import Trade. It carries out innovative practices to promote the implementation of policies. Nansha District’s has made progress in foreign exchanges, and economic and trade cooperation, demonstrating its vitality in economic cooperation and trade. From January to July this year, the import and export value of Nansha totaled 135.1 billion yuan, of which imports reached 67.58 billion yuan, a year-on-year increase of 11.1%, and the utilized foreign capital reached US$1.942 billion, a year-on-year increase of 215.13%. By August 1, there were 132 overseas investment enterprises in Nansha District, with a total investment of US$7.465 billion, covering 32 countries and regions.

Picture: Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (Guangzhou)

Towards the future: Jointly build a gateway for high-standard opening up  

Centering on the key task of jointly building a gateway for high-standard opening up under the Overall Plan of Nansha, Nansha held the “Co-building a gateway for high-standard opening up – Session for overseas investment” on August 1 to provide overseas investment information services for “going global” enterprises in Nansha, provide door-to-door targeted services for key overseas investment enterprises, and assist the business system in holding overseas investment service promotion activities. At the “Co-building a gateway for high-standard opening up – press conference on international economic cooperation and trade policy” held on August 17, it released policies on international foreign trade, and introduced the location and policy advantages of Nansha to steadily increase the volume and quality of foreign trade in Nansha, and enhance the resilience for sustained development.

In the future, Nansha will work with Hong Kong and Macao to meet the development needs of countries and regions related to the Belt and Road initiative, help enterprises participate in cooperation in international industrial chain, and improve the international economic cooperation and trade policy service system. It will build a high-standard Nansha Demonstration Zone of Creative Promotion of Import Trade and comprehensive bonded zone, strengthen pragmatic exchanges with the world’s major free trade zones, international ports and business associations, as well as build a platform for international economic cooperation and trade. It will accelerate the construction of major projects such as the Nansha Port Phase-IV, build a comprehensive large-scale port area that provides a full range of services, promote the integration of shipping service resources in the Greater Bay Area, and build a multimodal transport system. It is time to forge ahead to make the blueprint a reality. Nansha will take advantage of the Overall Plan of Nansha to build a gateway for high-standard opening up, and play a better leading role in the construction of the Guangdong-Hong Kong Greater Bay Area.

Picture: Nansha Port

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