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China reviews its new characteristics of economic cooperation with B&R countries
February 13, 2019
Abstract : China has made stable progress and achieved fruitful results last year in economic and trade cooperation with Belt and Road countries, China's Ministry of Commerce said in a press conference on Tuesday.
BEIJING, Feb. 13 (Xinhua) -- China has made stable progress and achieved fruitful results last year in economic and trade cooperation with Belt and Road countries, Chinese Vice Minister of of Commerce Qian Keming said in a press conference on Tuesday.
According to the vice minister, the economic cooperation between China and B&R countries in 2018 presented main characteristics as follows:
--- Rapid development of trade
China has built trade promotion platforms and accelerated the development of Silk Road e-commerce to advance trade liberalization and facilitation. China has signed e-commerce cooperation documents with nine countries and launched a total of 6,363 China-Europe freight trains in the whole year, with 540,000 TEUs of goods transported. Trade value with the countries along the Belt and Road routes reached 1.3 trillion U.S. dollars, an increase of 16.3 percent, higher than the overall growth rate of foreign trade by 3.7 percentage points.
--- Deepening investment cooperation
China has further improved its business environment and enlarged foreign investment access. Investment from countries along the B&R routes has totaled 6.08 billion U.S. dollars. Direct investment in the countries along the B&R routes was 16.27 billion U.S. dollars, and the amount of foreign contracted projects in the countries along the B&R routes was 89.33 billion U.S. dollars. Besides, China has signed cooperation agreements in third-party countries with Japan, Spain, the Netherlands and Belgium.
--- Accelerating FTZ network construction
China has accelerated construction of its global high-standard free trade zone (FTZ) network during the past year. The Free Trade Agreement between Georgia and China has entered into force. Besides, progress has been made in FTZ construction and free trade upgrading with countries such as Singapore, Mauritius. Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) negotiation with The Eurasian Economic Union has also made positive development.
--- Advancement in major projects
A number of China's overseas projects were completed and launched in 2018. Such projects as China-Maldives Friendship Bridge, Gwadar Port and etc. These large projects have effectively promoted local economic and social development and improved of people's livelihood. Besides, overseas economic and trade cooperation zones have highlighted Belt and Road construction, which created a large number of jobs, and are welcomed and praised by the host country.
--- Perfection of cooperation mechanism
China has made efforts in the construction of economic and trade cooperation mechanism. Special working group has been established with Thailand and Kenya to guarantee unimpeded trade channel, moreover, investment cooperation working groups with Kuwait and Jordan and service & trade cooperation mechanisms with seven countries were established last year, all above measures have provided a solid institutional foundation for B&R cooperation. In April this year, the second Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation (BRF) will be held in Beijing, China will further promote high-quality development of the Belt and Road economic and trade cooperation to a new height.
(Edited by Bao Nuomin, [email protected])
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