23 May 2016
State Council Issues Opinions on Stabilising Foreign Trade
The State Council released on www.gov.cn on 9 May Several Opinions on Promoting the Stabilisation and Recovery of Foreign Trade (for details in Chinese, please see: http://www.gov.cn/zhengce/content/2016-05/09/content_5071534.htm). One of the measures suggested is to reduce tariff on certain types of consumer goods so as to bring overseas spending back.
Adjusting and perfecting the export tax rebate policy. The export tax rebate rate structure will be optimised. The principle of rebating the amount of tariff levied will apply to certain types of electrical and electronic products, including cameras, movie cameras and internal combustion engines. Steps will be taken to ensure the timely payment of rebates in full and strong measures will be taken to crack down on tax rebate frauds. Measures for the classified management of export rebates will be improved. Steps will be taken to gradually increase the ratio of Category I Enterprises for export rebates and give full scope to the demonstrative and leading role of these enterprises.
Implementing a proactive import policy. Steps will be taken to improve the import discount interest policy and revise the Catalogue of Encouraged Technology and Product Imports, with emphasis on supporting advanced equipment and technology imports and encouraging enterprises to carry out introduction, adaptation, assimilation and innovation. Steps will also be taken to improve the existing administrative measures for automobile brand sales and effectively promote the parallel import of automobiles. Qualified crude oil processing enterprises will be granted the right to use and import crude oil.
Reducing and regulating some of the charges for enterprises. Steps will be taken to implement the system of cataloging the charging items and the Measures for Port Charging and Billing and step up the promotion of market-oriented reforms, with emphasis on breaking monopolies, strengthening and making innovations in the supervision and administration of fee charging, and establishing a mechanism for fighting irregularities in fee charging. Increased efforts will be made to investigate and punish irregularities in fee charging on e-government platforms, and an overall check will be conducted on the e-government platforms of the departments of customs, entry-exit inspection and quarantine, taxation and commerce. Port, insurance, transportation, bank and other charges will be reasonably regulated to support the development of the real economy. The amalgamation of cargo dues and port construction fees will be accelerated. Electrical and electronic products for export will be exempted from contributions to the waste electrical and electronic products disposal fund if they meet the policy requirements.
The General Office of the State Council issued Several Opinions on Supporting the Steady Growth of Foreign Trade (document No. 19) in May 2014 with 16 pro-growth measures proposed (for details in Chinese, please see: http://www.gov.cn/zhengce/content/2014-05/15/content_8812.htm). This time the State Council proposed 14 measures for stabilising foreign trade.
The Opinions also disclosed China's intention to stabilise foreign trade before commencing on transformation and upgrading. The creation of proprietary brands and the protection of intellectual property rights are for the promotion of transformation and upgrading in foreign trade. Whether we are talking about upgrading products or the structure and means of trade, the first important thing is to stabilise foreign trade.