China widens access to financial markets for foreign investors

Li Yi China Plus Published: 2017-11-10 21:55:44
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China will further open up its financial markets for foreign investors, by implementing several specific measures to ease and lift its investment restrictions on foreign companies.

Vice Finance Minister Zhu Guangyao announced the decision on Friday, while elaborating on the consensus in economic cooperation reached by the two sides during U.S. President Donald Trump's state visit to China.

CRI's Li Yi reports.

Vice Finance Minister Zhu Guangyao says China will widen the access to its financial markets for foreign investors in the coming years.

Specific measures will be implemented in sectors including banking, securities and insurances.

"Foreign businesses will be allowed to own up to 51 percent of shares in joint ventures in securities, funds or futures, and the cap will be eventually phased out over three years. Restrictions on investment in Chinese banks and financial asset management companies will be removed; previously single foreign ownership should be under 20 percent while overall foreign ownership under 25 percent."

The official goes on to say that after three years, foreign investors will be allowed to own up to 51 percent of shares in joint ventures in life insurance, and the cap will be removed in five years.

Meantime, duties on automobiles will be reduced. Before June 2018, restrictions on foreign investment in special and new energy vehicle companies will be eased in free trade zones.

During U.S President Donald Trump's state visit to China this week, Chinese and U.S. companies signed deals worth more than 250 billion U.S. dollars, the largest economic cooperation between China and the U.S., as well as in the world.

Chinese and U.S. companies signed deals worth more than 250 billion U.S. dollars, the largest economic cooperation between China and the U.S., as well as in the world.[Photo: VCG]

Chinese and U.S. companies signed deals worth more than 250 billion U.S. dollars, the largest economic cooperation between China and the U.S., as well as in the world.[Photo: IC]

As the vice finance minister introduces the consensus reached by the two countries in economic collaboration, he has also revealed several requirements China has proposed to the U.S. side on future economic cooperation.

"China has asked the United States to ease its controls on exports of high-tech products, fulfill its obligations under Article 15 of the Protocol on China's Accession to the WTO, treat Chinese investors fairly in the U.S. market, push forward the license application process of China International Capital Corporation in the U.S. and be prudent in trade remedy measures."

During a state dinner hosted for Donald Trump on Thursday, Chinese President Xi Jinping said that China and the United States should be partners, not rivals, and together they could be good for each other and the whole world.

Zhang Monan, a researcher at the Department of Economic Strategy of China Center for International Economic Exchanges, says it is a great breakthrough for future China-U.S. relations that the two countries have agreed to expand their economic and trade cooperation.

"The trade frictions and imbalance between China and the United States have always been major resistance factors in developing bilateral business relations. Both sides have been working to solve these problems. China and the U.S. should expand their cooperation in trade and other sectors. There are huge potentials for bilateral collaboration in many industries such as intelligent manufacturing, digital economy, biotechnology and other high-tech fields."

Bilateral trade surged to nearly 520 billion U.S. dollars in 2016, from 2.5 billion dollars in 1979 when the two countries established diplomatic ties.

For CRI, I'm Li Yi.

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