Aerial photo taken on Sept. 13, 2022 shows ships berthed at the container wharf of Qinzhou Port in Qinzhou, south China's Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region. (Xinhua/Zhang Ailin)
China has been expanding its free trade area network since its accession to the World Trade Organization in 2001, Shu Jueting, spokesperson for the Ministry of Commerce, said Thursday.
So far, China has signed 19 free trade agreements with 26 countries and regions, with partners covering Asia, Oceania, Latin America, Europe and Africa, Shu told a regular media conference.
The volume of trade between China and its free trade partners accounts for about 35 percent of the country's total foreign trade, the spokesperson said.
The country will further increase the proportion of trade in goods with zero tariffs, ease market access for trade in services and investment, take an active part in negotiations on new rules for the digital economy and environmental protection, and develop new systems for an open economy at a higher level, Shu said.
China will also ink more free trade agreements with willing partners, and work to enhance effectiveness of these agreements to benefit businesses and people better and faster, Shu added.