China wants fewer curbs in free trade zones to lure foreign investment
BEIJING (REUTERS) - China hopes to suspend its laws governing foreign investment in proposed free trade zones, in a sign the world's second-biggest economy could open further to foreign competition.
The State Council, China's Cabinet, will ask senior members of the National People's Congress, or Parliament, for the power to suspend laws and regulations governing both foreign-owned companies and joint ventures between Chinese and foreign companies in free trade zones, including Shanghai, the Cabinet said on its website.
The move is aimed at "accelerating transformation of the government's role... and innovating ways of (further) opening up (to foreign investment)", according to the statement, seen on Sunday. It set no timetable and gave no further details.
Foreign direct investment in China slowed last year but reversed its decline in the first quarter of this year as confidence improved. China attracted US$38.3 billion (S$48.6 billion) in foreign direct investment in the first four months of the year, up 1.2 per cent from the same period last year.