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Shanghai Free Trade Zone 9 years on / Updates

Shanghai FTZ celebrates 9th birthday | Updated: 2022-10-09
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Containers pile up at a port in Shanghai FTZ. [Photo/Shanghai Fabu]

The China (Shanghai) Pilot Free Trade Zone (FTZ) celebrated its ninth birthday on Sept 29.

Over the past nine years, Shanghai FTZ's area has expanded from 28.78 square kilometers to 120.72 sq km. Occupying one-fiftieth of Shanghai's land area, the zone has generated one-fourth of the city's GDP and two-fifths of the city's total trade volume.

"Shanghai FTZ is not only a carrier of China's opening-up goals, but also represents a brand-new development concept," said Xu Jian, head of the Shanghai Pudong Reform and Development Research Institute.

Since the establishment of Shanghai FTZ, new business formats have emerged like mushrooms in a prime environment, such as China's first foreign-funded vocational training institutions, the first solely foreign-owned international ship management company and the first solely foreign-owned medical institution.

In addition, the FTZ has also led the way in practicing modernization and institutional innovation with Chinese characteristics.

For example, Shanghai FTZ initiated remote supervision of aircrafts that are rented in Shanghai. In 2021, 29 aircrafts benefited from the convenience of the new method of supervision, which cut companies' costs by about 8.5 million yuan ($1.2 million).

Since 2013, a slew of reforms such as trade facilitation, negative foreign investment lists and free trade accounts have been launched in Shanghai FTZ and are being promoted nationwide.

Its growth has demonstrated China's determination of achieving a higher-level opening-up and creating a highly efficient and open business environment for global companies.

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