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Measures to facilitate foreign trade

A business zone in Jinan, capital of Shandong province [Photo by Chen Changli/Jinan Daily]

The province of Shandong will launch a slew of measures to facilitate foreign trade and explore more cooperation opportunities over the 14th Five-Year Plan period (2021-25), local authorities announced during a news conference held on March 1 by the Information Office of Shandong Provincial People's Government.

According to Zhang Yiying, deputy director of the Shandong Provincial Department of Commerce, imports and exports in Shandong exceeded 2.2 trillion yuan ($340.02 billion), with an average annual growth rate of 8.1 percent, higher than the national figure, during the 13th Five-Year Plan period (2016-20).

Over the past five years, the actual use of foreign investment in Shandong exceeded $17 billion, accounting for 12.2 percent of the country’s total, up from 6.9 percent compared to the end of 2015. The province's actual foreign investment, outbound investment and investment in countries involved in the Belt and Road Initiative were 1.9 times, 2 times and 2.5 times that of the 12th Five-Year Plan period (2011-15).

In the coming five years, the province will further reform and opening-up, with measures focusing on building the China-Japan-ROK local economic and trade cooperation demonstration zone, fostering platforms for higher-level opening up, and boosting trade facilitation.

Shandong will deepen national service trade innovation and the development of pilot areas in Jinan, Qingdao and Weihai, and build service outsourcing demonstration cities.

The province will further integrate itself into Belt and Road cooperation, expand cooperation with Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) member countries, accelerate the creation of corridors, commercial logistics hubs, and bases for important industries and people-to-people exchanges connecting countries in Northeast Asia, and advance construction of international trade channels featuring efficiency, low cost and good services.

It will continue to encourage cross-border e-commerce and other new business forms and models to grow even quicker to foster new drivers of foreign trade.

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