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China to Cut Tariffs in 2017

China will adjust tariffs on a number of exports and imports from 1 January 2017, according to the Ministry of Finance (MOF). The adjustment was approved by the State Council after scrutinised by its Customs Tariff Commission.

MOF said that tariff adjustment will be based on innovation-driven development, encouraging imports of the country’s much-needed advanced equipment, key components and energy raw materials. The import tariffs of items including integrated circuit testing and sorting equipment, aircraft hydraulic actuator and pyrolysis furnace will be reduced through the provisional tax rates.

Tariffs on specialty food such as tuna, arctic shrimp and cranberry as well as cultural products such as original sculpture will be reduced in order to give a wider choice to domestic consumers. The import tax on yew skin and foliage required for the production of anti-cancer drugs and acarbose hydrate for diabetes drugs will also be reduced as a response to the public’s concerns about medical and health care.

Import tariffs of sodium acrylate polymers and semiconductor products with the flow function which are subject to the provisional tax rates will also be adjusted in order to protect domestic industries. Export tariffs of nitrogen fertiliser, phosphorus fertiliser and natural graphite will be scrapped and that of nitrogen-phosphorus-potassium compound fertiliser and steel billet will be reduced.

China will continue to levy conventional tariffs on selected imported goods originating from 25 countries and territories in 2017 in order to expand bilateral and multilateral economic and trade co-operation and accelerate the implementation of the free trade area initiative. Tariffs will be further reduced under free trade agreements between China and South Korea, Australia, New Zealand, Peru, Costa Rica, Switzerland, Iceland and Pakistan. The scope of commodities and tariffs will stay unchanged under free trade agreements between China and Singapore, ASEAN and Chile, as well as the Asia-Pacific Trade Agreement. Meanwhile, the range of goods subject to zero tariffs under the Closer Economic Partnership Arrangement (CEPA) with Hong Kong and Macau will be further widened. The range of goods and tariff rates under the Economic Co-operation Framework Agreement (ECFA) with Taiwan will remain unchanged.

China reduced the most-favoured-nation tariffs for selected information technology products for the first time in September 2016. The new rates will continue to apply in the first half of 2017. Tax cut is scheduled for the second time on 1 July 2017. China will continue to implement tariff reductions on APEC environmental products imports through provisional tax rates and grant zero-tariff treatment to the least developed countries in 2017.

Meanwhile, China will also adjust tariff items in 2017, increasing the total number to 8,547. The new tariff nomenclature will be more in line with the actual needs of international trade development.

For details of the announcement on tariff adjustment in Chinese, please see:

http://gss.mof.gov.cn/zhengwuxinxi/zhengcefabu/201612/t20161223_2498029.html

Content provided by Picture: HKTDC Research
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