CE attends China (Guangdong) Pilot Free Trade Zone plaque-unveiling ceremony
The Chief Executive, Mr C Y Leung, attended the plaque-unveiling ceremony for the China (Guangdong) Pilot Free Trade Zone (the Guangdong FTZ) this morning (April 21) in Nansha. He was accompanied by Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government officials including the Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development, Mr Gregory So, and the Secretary for Development, Mr Paul Chan.
The plaque-unveiling ceremony was hosted by Guangdong, and attending Guangdong provincial leaders included the Secretary of the CPC Guangdong Provincial Committee, Mr Hu Chunhua; the Governor of Guangdong Province, Mr Zhu Xiaodan; the Secretary of the CPC Shenzhen Municipal Committee, Mr Ma Xingrui; the Secretary of the CPC Zhuhai Municipal Committee, Mr Li Jia; and the Secretary of the CPC Guangzhou Municipal Committee, Mr Ren Xuefeng.
"We are glad that the State Council announced the overall plans of the three new FTZs, including that for the Guangdong FTZ, yesterday. In particular, the Guangdong FTZ emphasises fostering the Mainland's deeper economic co-operation with Hong Kong and Macau, and developing itself into an exemplary zone for in-depth co-operation amongst Guangdong, Hong Kong and Macau," a Government spokesman said.
The establishment of FTZs is a significant Mainland policy. By speeding up changes in government functions, implementing new modes of investment management and facilitating trade and investment, FTZs aim to explore new means and accumulate experience for deepening reforms and further opening up, so that those replicable and promotable successful experiences can be implemented in other places on the Mainland.
Further to the establishment of the China (Shanghai) Pilot Free Trade Zone in September 2013, the executive meeting of the State Council decided last December to establish three more FTZs in designated areas of Guangdong, Tianjin and Fujian, and deepen the reforms of the Shanghai FTZ.
The Guangdong FTZ covers designated areas in Nansha, Qianhai and Hengqin. It is positioned to leverage on Hong Kong and Macau, serve the Mainland and reach out globally, and to develop into an exemplary zone for in-depth co-operation amongst Guangdong, Hong Kong and Macau as well as an important hub for the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road. Its target is to create an internationalised and market-led business environment with a sound legal framework, establish a new open economic system and achieve in-depth co-operation amongst Guangdong, Hong Kong and Macau after three to five years of pilot reforms.
"Co-operation between Guangdong and Hong Kong has all along been very close. We trust that the setting up of the Guangdong FTZ would further enhance co-operation between the two places and open up room for broader co-operation between the business sectors of Guangdong and Hong Kong in various areas, especially in the services sector. The Guangdong FTZ would adopt a pre-establishment national treatment plus negative list approach for management of foreign investments, and foreign investment projects falling outside the negative list would be subject to the filing of records. This would greatly facilitate foreign enterprises, including Hong Kong enterprises, in investing in the FTZ," the spokesman said.
"Hong Kong is the largest investor in the Mainland, including Guangdong Province. Given Hong Kong's deep understanding of the Mainland market, especially Guangdong Province, and our extensive business network in the Mainland, the establishment of FTZs would bring more business opportunities for Hong Kong enterprises. We hope the Guangdong side would formulate details for implementing the policy measures as soon as possible."
Ends/Tuesday, April 21, 2015