Weekly policy snapshot of Chinese economy

China’s policymakers have rolled out a raft of measures over the past week to boost economic growth and enhance opening up.

The following are the latest policy moves during the period:

— The Chinese government has officially ratified the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) agreement, Minister of Commerce Wang Wentao said Monday.

Some member countries are also accelerating their procedures, and it is hoped that relevant countries can speed up their progress and finally reach the threshold of entry into force, Wang told reporters on the sidelines of the annual national legislative session.

— China will further shorten the negative list for foreign investment and expand opening up of its service sector, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang said Thursday.

— China’s monetary authorities announced on Friday the launch of a pilot cash-pooling service for multinational companies that integrates domestic and foreign currency management to facilitate the use of cross-border capital.

The pilot program will be launched in the country’s capital Beijing and the southern economic powerhouse Shenzhen, and will serve large multinational companies with relatively high credit ratings, according to the People’s Bank of China (PBOC) and the State Administration of Foreign Exchange.

The move aims to advance the construction of the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area and the Beijing pilot free-trade zone, support the building of a higher-level open economy, and improve the ability of financial services to serve the real economy, the PBOC said in a statement.

— China will raise the statutory age for retirement in a gradual, flexible, and differentiated manner, said a social security expert.

According to the Outline of the 14th Five-Year Plan (2021-2025) for National Economic and Social Development and the Long-Range Objectives Through the Year 2035, China will take small steps to raise the retirement age. It will also implement its flexibility, tailor policies for different groups, consider all factors, and make overall plans.

— China and Norway pledged to conclude the free trade agreement (FTA) negotiations as soon as possible, according to the Ministry of Commerce (MOC) on Friday.

The two sides negotiated via video link on Thursday about issues including trade in goods, trade in services, investment, rules of origin, customs procedures and trade facilitation, and technical trade barriers.

Source: Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha (BSS)