China (Guangdong) Pilot Free Trade Zone committed to a world-class business environment

Building a new innovative and open hub in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area

GUANGZHOU, China, Dec. 20, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- December 20, 2019, marks the 20th anniversary of Macao's return to the motherland. Hengqin Area of Zhuhai, part of China (Guangdong) Pilot Free Trade Zone (GDFTZ), was established thanks to its neighboring Macao. Now with the most open system on the mainland, Hengqin has emerged as a place to boost the moderately diverse and sustainable economic growth of Macao. It has been home to 1,900 Macao enterprises with a total investment of USD 85.5 billion.

Qianhai & Shekou Area of Shenzhen, China (Guangdong) Pilot Free Trade Zone
Qianhai & Shekou Area of Shenzhen, China (Guangdong) Pilot Free Trade Zone

This is one of the examples of how GDFTZ, which comprises the Nansha Area of Guangzhou, the Qianhai & Shekou Area of Shenzhen, and the Hengqin Area of Zhuhai, stays committed to promoting opening up and the innovation-driven development of the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area.

Building the pilot free trade zone represents one of China's major measures to follow the trend of global economic development with greater commitment to opening up. The thriving GDFTZ, covering an area of 116.2 square kilometers in the Greater Bay Area, is demonstrating huge potential of a stronger competitor and influencer with great vision.

GDFTZ was ranked 32nd globally with a score of 77.31 in terms of ease of doing business, according to a simulation ranking of the Report on the Business Environment of China (Guangdong) Pilot Free Trade Zone released by KPMG Advisory (China) earlier this year. In the report, GDFTZ was also in the top 15 worldwide in terms of indicators of starting a business, getting electricity, and enforcing contracts.

An enabling business environment in GDFTZ has been fostered with its resolution to advance reform and innovation. Since its inauguration in 2015, GDFTZ has achieved 456 institutional innovations, with many never seen before in China. Nansha, for instance, has taken a lead in launching intelligent supervision systems, such as "online customs", "the global quality and traceability system", and "ports for quality inspection", cutting the time to clear general cargos by 42.6%. The smart platform for monitoring, preventing and controlling local risks that Qianhai & Shekou set up has ensured efficiency in supervising more than 170,000 enterprises.

A sound business environment means increased productivity. In GDFTZ, greater convenience has been offered to enterprises to start businesses of all kinds as an increasing number of cross-border e-commerce businesses flow in; more opportunities have been given to companies to go global when their bonded goods are transferred to the downtown area for display; and costs have been significantly slashed thanks to the integrated storage of cargos, bonded and non-bonded ones.

International observers believe that the pilot free trade zone helps China deepen reform in all respects, but more importantly, it puts the country in a better position to attract investment with an improved business environment and the resulting influx of various factors and resources.

Over the past four years, GDFTZ has developed into a new urban center with high-rises from mud flats and islands in the Pearl River estuary region. And all its successes couldn't have been made possible without the efforts to prioritize institutional innovation, the commitment to build a demonstration zone for cooperation in the Greater Bay Area and sustain the long-term prosperity and stability of Hong Kong and Macao, and the resolve to shape a world-class business environment.

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