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Guangdong and Fujian to Extend FTZ Policies to Pan-Pearl River Delta

Guangdong and Fujian will follow in the footsteps of Shanghai to extend the Free Trade Zone preferential policies to neighbouring cities and provinces.

A memorandum, which calls for policy radiation to the Pan-Pearl River Delta Region (PPRD), was signed by PPRD chief executives or their representatives in a PPRD Regional Cooperation Chief Executives Joint Meeting held in Fuzhou on 11 December 2015.

PPRD cooperation is China’s largest and most extensive regional collaboration initiative, covering 11 provinces and special administrative regions, namely Fujian, Jiangxi, Hunan, Guangdong, Guangxi, Hainan, Sichuan, Guizhou, Yunnan, Hong Kong and Macau. Against the backdrop of the Belt and Road Initiative, preferential policies of the Guangdong and Fujian Pilot FTZs, in particular, which were launched this year, are being extended to economic and trade exchanges under the PPRD framework. The objective is to build a new trade framework connecting Hong Kong and Macau, facing Southeast Asia, and lead a higher level development in the Pan-Pearl River Delta region.

Currently, the PPRD parties have deepened cooperation in customs facilitation, investment and trade and business environment, exploring new modes of cooperation and creating a cooperation platform conducive to long-term development.

Clearance integration of 11 customs regions of the four PPRD provinces of Fujian, Guangdong, Guangxi and Hainan has begun operation since 1 May 21015. Customs said that clearance integration also facilitated the connection between Fujian and Guangdong, especially the joint development of the pilot FTZs by the customs of the two places, allowing enterprises to enjoy multiple policy convenience.

Under the PPRD programme, economic and trade relations between the mainland and Hong Kong, Macau will get closer. PPRD parties also reckoned that the close ties between FTZs in the PPRD and Guangdong, Hong Kong and Macau were expected to lead further upgrading and development of the PPRD region, with the three places as the core.

PPRD parties generally recognise Hong Kong’s unique advantages as the channel for capital, technology and talent and its role as "super connector". They see Hong Kong well positioned to help PPRD provinces achieve "going out" and "bringing in”. Hence, they encourage PPRD enterprises to set up regional headquarters in Hong Kong, using Hong Kong’s professional services in diversified risk management, asset management, legal management and settlement of disputes as an international financial centre.

Content provided by Picture: HKTDC Research
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