China approves 12 more free trade zones
                 English.news.cn | 2014-01-22 21:26:35 | Editor: Zhu Ningzhu

BEIJING, Jan. 22 (Xinhua) -- China's central government has given the nod to 12 free trade zones (FTZs) following the one in Shanghai, amid a spurt of nationwide enthusiasm for such schemes.

Tianjin Municipality and Guangdong Province have been green-lit to set up FTZs, a source with knowledge of the approval told Xinhua-run Economic Information Daily on Wednesday, refusing to leak the remaining 10.

After consent from the cabinet, a group of central government departments will conduct a joint survey of the proposed zones, and hammer out specific establishment plans in a process that may last more than a year, said the source.

So far, Tianjin and Guangdong have completed the survey part, which the other 10 have just started, according to the source.

Provincial regions including Zhejiang, Shandong, Liaoning, Henan, Fujian, Sichuan, Guangxi and Yunnan, and cities including Suzhou, Wuxi and Hefei have all said that filing FTZ applications is high up their 2014 priority list.

"China sets no limits on FTZ numbers and no timetables on building them, as long as they meet the requirements of an FTZ," added the source.

Huo Jianguo, head of a research institute with China's Commerce Ministry, said the emerging FTZs could be testing grounds for further opening-up policies, and serve as the bright spot of the country's economic development.

Last September, China established the Shanghai FTZ, the first of its kind, as a national strategic trial to further tap market forces and push market-oriented trade and investment reforms.

Related:

Shanghai FTZ measures to be rolled out

SHANGHAI, Jan. 21 (Xinhua) -- More detailed measures will be soon rolled out to implement the central bank's guideline to push financial reforms in Shanghai's free trade zone, an official with the zone said on Tuesday.

Dai Haibo, deputy director of the administrative committee of the China (Shanghai) Pilot Free Trade Zone (FTZ), said such measures were intended to be put in place in March, three months after the People's Bank of China issued a 30-point guideline to support the FTZ.  Full story

Govt revamps FTZ regulations

BEIJING, Jan. 7 (Xinhuanet) -- The central government on Monday modified a series of regulations for the China (Shanghai) Pilot Free Trade Zone, in a bid to allow greater involvement of foreign investors in formerly restricted areas such as telecommunications.

Thirty-two legal clauses from various FTZ laws and regulations were suspended in the 28.78 sq km zone, which is a test field for future economic reforms, according to a statement on the website of the State Council, China's cabinet. Full story

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