Several Opinions of the State Council on Accelerating the Development of Trade in Services
Several Opinions of the State Council on Accelerating the Development of Trade in Services
· Document Number：No. 8  of the State Council
· Area of Law： Trade & Commerce
· Level of Authority： Regulatory Documents of the State Council
· Date issued：01-28-2015
· Effective Date：01-28-2015
· Status： Effective
· Issuing Authority： State Council
Several Opinions of the State Council on Accelerating the Development of Trade in Services
(No. 8  of the State Council)
The people's governments of all provinces, autonomous regions, and municipalities directly under the Central Government; all ministries and commissions of the State Council; and all institutions directly under the State Council:
In recent years, China's trade in services has witnessed rapid development, but is relatively lack of international competitiveness generally, which is still the “shortcoming” of trade in services. The vigorous development of trade in services is still an important point of strength for enlarging opening-up and exploring development space, which is conducive to stabilizing and increasing employment, adjusting economic structures, improving the development quality and efficiency, and cultivating new growth points. In order to adapt to the new normal of economy, and accelerate the development of trade in services, the following opinions are hereby offered:
I. General requirements
(1) Guiding ideology. The spirit of the 18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (“CPC”), and the Second, Third and Fourth Plenary Sessions of the 18th CPC Central Committee shall be thoroughly implemented, and focus shall be put on constructing a market environment featuring fair competition, with deepening reform, expanding opening-up and encouraging innovation as the driving force, so as to promote the mutual investment in services, improve the policy support system for trade in services, accelerate the liberalization and facilitation of trade in services, promote the expansion of scale of trade in services, optimize the structures of trade in services, enhance service export capacities, and cultivate the international competitiveness of “Chinese services.”
(2) Basic principles.
Deepening of reform and expansion of opening-up. The reform of the service industry shall be deepened; investment access in services shall be relaxed; administrative approval items shall be reduced; regional blockade and industry monopoly shall be broken; and thesystem and mechanism obstacles restricting thedevelopment of the service industry shall be removed. The orderly advancement of opening-up of the service industry shall be adhered to, and reform, development and innovation shall be promoted through opening-up.
Market competition and government guidance. The decisive role of the market in the resource allocation of trade in services shall be maximized, and focus shall be put on stimulating the new vitality of development of various market players; and functions of governments in system building, micro guidance, environment creation, policy support and other aspects shall be strengthened, and the guiding role of governments shall be maximized.
Industrial support and innovative development. Emphasis shall be laid on the coordinated development between industry and trade and between trade in goods and trade in services. Trade in services shall be developed by relying on the strengths of the manufacturing industry, so as to drive the “international presence” of Chinese services; the supporting role of trade in services shall be maximized, and the value added of trade in goods shall be enhanced. A solid foundation for the development of trade in services shall be laid, so as to improve the international competitiveness of the service industry.
(3) Development goals. The level of the opening-up of the service industry shall be further enhanced, and the scope of utilization of foreign capital and foreign investment by the service industry shall be gradually expanded, and the quality and level thereof shall be gradually improved. The scale of trade in services shall be gradually expanded. By 2020, theamount of imported and exported services shall exceed 100 million US dollars; the proportion of trade in services to foreign trade shall be further enhanced; and the global proportion of our trade in services shall be increased year by year. The structures of trade in services shall be gradually optimized; the proportion of emerging services shall be increased year by year; the international market layout shall be gradually balanced; and the proportion of service exports of countries and regions along the “One Belt, One Road” in China's service exports shall be steadily increased.
II. Main tasks
(4) Expanding the scale of trade in services. The scale advantages of exports of labor-intensive services including tourism and construction, among others, shall be consolidated. Focus shall be put on cultivating the development of transportation, communications, finance, insurance, computers and information services, consultation, research and development, energy conservation and environment protection, environmental services and other capital and technology-intensive services, and domestic demands shall be met by expanding imports and industrial competitiveness and new competitive strengths in foreign trade shall be cultivated by encouraging exports. The exports of cultural arts, radio, film and television, press and publications, education and other cultural services inheriting the core values of Chinese culture shall be actively promoted;the exports of culture creativity, digital publication, animation games and other new-type cultural services shall be vigorously promoted; and the international exchange and cooperation in traditional Chinese medicine, sports, catering and other characteristic services shall be strengthened, so as to improve the soft power and influence of Chinese culture.
(5) Optimizing the structures of trade in services. The industrial structures of trade in services shall be optimized; new areas of trade in services shall be actively explored; and the proportion of capital and technology-intensive services, characteristic services and other high value-added services to the imports and exports of services shall be steadily increased. The international market layout shall be optimized; the traditional market shall continue to be consolidated; and the imports of capital and technology-intensive services shall be intensified while exploring the potential of service exports. The market of the countries and regions along the “One Belt, One Road,” shall be vigorously developed; the market share of emerging countries shall be increased; trade in transportation, construction and other services shall be actively developed; international exquisite tourism routes and products with the characteristics of the Silk Road shall be cultivated; the development of trade in characteristic services inheriting Chinese culture shall be boosted; and the proportion of trade in capital and technology-intensive services shall be increased. Domestic regional distribution shall be optimized; the scale and innovation strengths of eastern coastal regionsshall consolidated; the development of trade in capital and technology-intensive services shall be accelerated; the resource advantages of central and western regions shall be maximized; characteristic industries shall be cultivated; and complementary competition and coordinated development shall be cultivated.
(6) Planning for the construction of functional zones for trade in services. The clustering role of the modern service industry and trade in services shall be maximized, and the pilot program of the innovative development of trade in servicesshall be conducted in regions where conditions permit. Planning shall be made for construction of a group of featured service export bases by relying on various existing development zones and pilot free trade zones. The service export functions of areas under special customs supervision or supervised bonded places shall be expanded, and international enter pot trade, international logistics, transit services, research and development, international settlement, distribution, warehousing and other functions shall be expanded.
(7) Innovating on the development model for trade in serves. The development model for trade in services under the information technology background shall be actively explored; the model innovation for trade in services shall be promoted by relying on big data, Internet of Things, mobile Internet, cloud computing and other new technologies; and thenew network platform for trade in services shall be created, so as to promote the integrated development between the manufacturing industry and the service industry and among various service sectors. Undertaking service outsourcing shall be used as an important means of improving China's service level and international influence; the scale of the service outsourcing industry shall be expanded; technical contents and the proportion of high value-added outsourcing business shall be increased; the service outsourcing business fields shall be expanded; and cross-border service delivery capabilities shall be improved. The coordinated development of offshore and onshore service outsourcing shall be promoted; and the scale of the onshore market shall be expanded gradually while actively undertaking the international service outsourcing.
(8) Cultivating the market players of trade in services. A group of large-sized multinational service enterprises with prominent main business and strong competitiveness shall be created, and several service brands with relatively strong international influence shall be cultivated; and the development of small and medium-sized enterprises (“SMEs”) that have characteristics and excelling innovation shall be supported, and SMEs shall be guided in being integrated into the global supply chain. Enterprises in the service industry above the designated scale shall be encouraged to take the international development road and actively explore overseas market, so as to enable all enterprises above the designated scale to have actual import and export performance. Enterprises of trade in servicesshall be supported in strengthening thebuilding of independent innovation capacities, and technology introduction, digestion, absorption and re-innovation in services shall be encouraged.
(9) Further expanding the opening-up of the service industry. The“pre-access national treatment plus negative list” administration mode for foreign investment shall be explored, and the quality and level of utilization of foreign investment shall be improved. The expansion of the service industry shall be promoted, and the orderly opening-up of finance, education, culture, medical care and other areas in the service industry shall be promoted, so as to gradually achieve the high-level opening-up at home and abroad; and restrictions on foreign investment accessfor cultivation of the young and provision for the aged, architectural design, accounting audit, commerce and trade and logistics, e-commerce and other areas in the service industry shall be removed. The development of rules on multilateral and regional negotiations on trade in services and global trade in services shall be actively participated in. The high-standard free trade zone networkfacing the whole world shall be established, and the two-way reciprocal opening-up for the service industry shall be actively promoted by relying on the implementation of the strategies for free trade areas. The liberalization of trade in services between the Chinese Mainland and Hong Kong and Macaushall be basically achieved. Mutually beneficialopening-up of the service industry between the Chinese Mainland and Taiwan shall be promoted.
(10) Vigorously promoting overseas investment in the service industry. Various enterprises in the service industry shall be supported in conducting investment cooperation abroad by means of new formation, merger and acquisition or cooperation, among others, accelerating the building of overseas marketing networks, and enhancing their commercial presence abroad. The enterprises in the service industry shall be supported in participating in the investment, construction and administration of overseas economic and trade cooperation zones. Enterprises shall be encouraged to build overseas bonded warehouses, and actively build the cross-border industrial chain, so as to drive domestic labor exports and goods, service and technology exports. Supports shall be given to overseas registration of intellectual property rights;overseas intellectual property right layout shall be strengthened; and overseas right protection shall be strengthened, so as to safeguard enterprises' rights and interests.
III. Policies and measures
(11) Strengthening planning and guidance. The leading role of planning shall be maximized, and the development planning for trade in services shall be developed on a regular basis. Localities shall be guided in effectively making the planning, determining leading industries and development priorities, and supporting the development of characteristic and advantageous industries. The support and guidance for key areas shall be strengthened, and the guiding catalogue in terms of exports of key services shall be developed. The liaison system for key enterprises at various levels shall be established.
(12) Improving finance and taxation policies. More support shall be given to the development of trade in services by making full use of the special funds for the development of foreign economy and trade and other policies; capital arrangement structures shall be further optimized; the focus of policy support shall be highlighted; the support modes shall be improved and innovated on; more social funds shall be guided to giving more support for the development of trade in services; financing channels shall be broadened; and public services shall be improved. In consideration of the comprehensive implementation of the reform of “levy of value-added tax in lieu of business tax,” zero tax rate or tax exemption shall apply to service exports, and the expansion of service exports shall be encouraged.
(13) Innovating on financial services. The construction of the financial service system shall be strengthened, and financial institutions shall be encouraged to innovate on financial products and services under the premise of controllable risks and conduct supply chain financing, overseas mergers and acquisitions and financing, receivables pledge loans, warehouse receipt pledge loans, financial leasing and other business. Policy financial institutionsshall be encouraged to strengthen the support for enterprises of trade in services in developing the international market, conducting international mergers and acquisitions and other business within the scope of existing business, and the construction of key projects in trade in services shall be supported. Insurance institutions shall be encouraged to innovate on insurance varieties and insurance business, explore ways to research and launch more foreign tradeexchange rate risk hedginginsurances which are more convenient, and simplify insurance purchase formalities by taking flexible underwriting policies under the premise of controllable risks. Enterprises of trade in services shall be guided in actively developing the international market by utilizing finance, insurance and a variety of other policy tools, so as to expand financing channels. The construction of the financing guarantee system for smallandmicro-sized enterprisesshall be driven, and thecomprehensive information sharingfor smallandmicro-sized enterprises shall be actively promoted. Multi-level capital market shall give more support to the enterprises of trade in services, and the eligible enterprises of trade in services shall be supported in being listed on the stock exchange market,being quoted on the National Equities Exchange and Quotations, and issuing corporate bonds and private placement bonds of SMEs, among others.
(14) Improving the level of facilitation. The port customs clearance administration mode appropriate for the characteristics of trade in services shall be established and improved. Innovations on the regulatory modesfor the international exhibits, works of art, e-commerce express mails and other special articles of exhibition, auction, express delivery and other service enterprises which need to undergo the customs clearance formalities shall be explored, and cross-border e-commerce customs clearance services shall be improved. The construction of financial infrastructures shall be strengthened; the cross-border RMB settlement shall be facilitated; domestic banking institutions and payment institutions shall be encouraged to expand the scope of cross-border payment services; and enterprises of trade in services shall be supported in improving the efficiency of the use of foreign exchange funds by overseas depositing of export proceeds and other means. International consultation and cooperation on the personnel flow, mutual recognition of qualifications, standardization and other aspects shall be strengthened, so as to facilitate the “bringing in” and “going out” of professional talent and professional services. Foreign high-end talent shall be given facilitation when applying for permanent residence permits in China.
(15) Creating the promotion platform. Business associations and promotion institutions shall be supported in conducting the promotion activities for trade in services in various forms to publicize “Chinese services” in an overall manner by means of government procurement of services, so as to improve the images of the brands and enterprises of trade in services. Enterprises shall be supported in participating in the key exhibitions for trade in services abroad. The exchange and cooperation platform for trade in services shall be actively cultivated; the exhibition pattern for trade in services led by China (Beijing) International Service and Trade Fair and supported by various professional exhibition forums shall be formed; and the new establishment of exhibition zones for trade in services in other investment trade exhibitions shall be encouraged. The cooperation agreements on trade in services shall be actively concluded with main partners of trade in services and countries and regions along the “One Belt, One Road”to conduct pragmatic cooperation under the bilateral framework.
IV. Guarantee system
(16) Improving the legal system. The promotion of the development and revision of the relevant basic laws on the service industry shall be accelerated; the system of laws and regulations on various areas of trade in services shall be established and improved; and the market access and operating orders of trade in services shall be regulated. Research shall be conducted to develop or improve the relevant regulations on service imports and exports. The localities where conditions permit shall be encouraged to promulgate local regulations on trade in services. The standardization system for the service industry in line with international standards shall be established.
(17) Establishing the coordination mechanism. The coordination mechanism of the State Council for the development of trade in services shall be established; the macro guidance to trade in services shall be strengthened; and overall planning shall be made for the opening-up of the service industry, the service export policies of various departments shall be coordinated with, and the facilitation and liberalization of trade in services shall be boosted. All localities shall take the vigorous development of trade in services as an important work content of stabilizing foreign trade growth and cultivating the new advantages of foreign trade competition, incorporate it into the government assessment indicator system, and improve the assessment mechanism.
(18) Improving the statistical work. The statistical monitoring, operation and analysis system for international trade in services shall be established and improved; the statistics indicator system for trade in services shall be improved; the data information exchange with international organizations and industry associations shall be strengthened; and the statistical data on trade in services shall be issued on a regular basis. The statistical methods for trade in services shall be innovated on; the guidance to the statistical work on local trade in services shall be strengthened; and direct reporting of the data on key enterprises shall be conducted.
(19) Strengthening talent cultivation. Talent in trade in services shall be vigorously cultivated, and the formation of the mechanism for joint talent cultivation by government departments, research institutes, institutions of higher learning and enterprises shall be accelerated. More efforts shall be made to cultivate, support and introduce core talent, professional talent in key areas, highly skilled talent and international talent. Institutions of higher learning shall be encouraged to add relevant courses on trade in services to their international economic and trade majors. Various market players shall be encouraged to strengthen talent cultivation, and conduct theoperation and administration of trade in services and the trainings of marketing service personnel, so as to form a team of high-quality professional talent.
(20) Optimizing the development environment. A good atmosphere where the whole society attaches importance to the development of the service industry and trade in services shall be actively created. The relevant laws and regulations and departmental rules on trade in services shall be reviewed and regulated; laws and regulations on domestic and foreign investment shall be unified; and a business environment where various market players legally gain equal access to the market and conduct fair competition shall be cultivated. Industry associations and chambers of commerce shall be driven to establish and improve their self-regulatory rules and pacts and codes of professional ethics for industry operation, regulate the behavior of members, promote the building of industry integrity, and conscientiously maintain the market order.
V. Organization and leadership
(21) All regions and all relevant departments shall, based on the overall situation and from a strategic perspective, get a full understanding of the great significance of the vigorous development of trade in services, and, according to the actual circumstances of their respective regions, departments and industries, develop and issue the action plans and supporting policies. All regions shall establish the working mechanisms, and actively cultivate characteristic and advantageous industries for trade in services in light of local actual circumstances. All relevant departments shall conduct close collaboration, form resultant forces, and promote the benign interaction among industrial policies, trade policies and investment policies, so as to actively create a policy environment for vigorously developing trade in services.
Annex: Work Division for Major Tasksand the Schedule thereof
January 28, 2015