Shanxi province accelerates opening up of its economy
North China's Shanxi province has accelerated its push to transform itself into an inland hub for the opening-up of its economy to the outside world – extending a process it has embarked on over the past decade.
Since 2012, Shanxi has continued to incubate foreign trading firms and upgrade existing ones, as well as to expand into international markets and develop open commercial platforms to promote the rapid growth of foreign trade.
Total imports and exports of the province topped 200 billion yuan ($31.48 billion) last year, with the scale and growth rate hitting record highs.
Furthermore, the province has implemented a system of pre-establishment national treatment plus a negative list.
German entrepreneurs visit the Shanxi Transformation and Comprehensive Reform Demonstration Zone. [Photo/Shanxi Daily]
It has also accelerated the construction of investment platforms and made more efforts to attract investment, so as to create an international, legal and streamlined business environment.
Some 115 new foreign-funded enterprises registered in Shanxi from January to November in 2021, a year-on-year increase of 17.4 percent, while the actual utilization of foreign capital during the period grew 16.3 percent year-on-year to $240 million.
Meanwhile, foreign investment by Shanxi companies has steadily advanced, and until the end of 2021, their accumulated foreign direct investment was $2.51 billion. The investment mainly poured into 49 countries and regions, including Australia, Malaysia, Mauritius, the United States, Canada, Singapore, Zimbabwe, and Mexico.
It went into the manufacturing, mining and wholesale and retail sectors, leasing and business services, agriculture, forestry, animal husbandry and fisheries, accommodation and catering sectors abroad.
Shanxi launches its first freight train to Europe on Feb 15, 2017. [Photo/Shanxi Daily]
Moreover, various platforms have become frontiers for Shanxi to expand its opening-up.
The Shanxi China-Europe (Central Asia) train service, for one, has gradually expanded operations. Since 2017, its freight trains have reached 28 cities in 13 countries involved in the Belt and Road Initiative. The local Zhongding Logistics Park has sent 572 freight trains to Europe and Central Asia.
Elsewhere, Yuncheng and Datong airports have officially opened after receiving approval, and a dedicated channel for international internet data has started operating in the Shanxi Transformation and Comprehensive Reform Demonstration Zone. The Taiyuan International Mail Exchange Bureau was completed and opened in 2018, and it has been continuously expanded and upgraded.
Shanxi's arts and crafts attract interest at the first China International Consumer Products Expo in Haikou, in South China's Hainan province, on May 7, 2021. [Photo/Shanxi Daily]
Shanxi has also promoted its achievements in transforming, marketing its investment environment and development advantages. It has also promoted its open image through product displays, industry matchmaking events, project negotiations and exhibitions at various international platforms.
The 12th Expo Central China held in Shanxi last May attracted 883 companies from 15 countries and more than 1,000 exhibitors from home and abroad, with the number of international companies attending hitting a record.
During the fourth China International Import Expo, held in East China's Shanghai in November, the province's trade delegation signed 128 purchase orders worth $610 million.