Municipalities and provinces already working to establish free trade ports
Many of China's pilot free trade zones, including in Shanghai and the provinces of Zhejiang and Sichuan, plan to build coastal and inland free trade ports this year to put the country's economic growth on a firmer footing, government officials say.
They plan to gradually build free trade ports from coastal areas to inland areas, as well as diversify the service function and build new logistics hubs for air and freight transportation services in China's central and western regions.
Nansha Port[File photo]
Ying Yong, a National People's Congress deputy and the mayor of Shanghai, says the city will explore the establishment of a free trade port, in an effort to facilitate trade and investment, in the China (Shanghai) Pilot Free Trade Zone.
Such efforts will rely on Shanghai's existing facilities such as Yangshan Deep Water Port and Pudong International Airport.
A free trade port is set up within a country's or region's borders but outside its customs supervision. It is a highly open area that allows the free flow of most commodities, currencies and people.
Ying says Shanghai will apply a negative list approach to market entry, in which State-owned sectors and businesses are off-limits to foreign investment. The move is expected to give foreign companies greater opportunities in the Chinese market.