China Regulatory Brief: New Commercial Registration System & Cross-Border E-Commerce Regulations

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China Approves New Economic Belt in South China

On July 28, China’s National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) released the “Circular on the Promulgation of the General Scheme for the Zhujiang-Xijiang Economic Belt (Fa Gai Di Qu [2014] No.1729)” in a bid to boost the regional economy. Covering the areas of Guangdong Province and Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, the economic belt is expected to be a transportation corridor between China and Southeast Asia. According to the Scheme, the two provinces will work together on environmental protection, modern service industries, modern agriculture, transport infrastructure integration and the construction of the Marine Silk Road.

Beijing Cancels 22 Administrative Approval Items

The Beijing municipal government recently released the “Circular on Cancelling Several Administrative Approvals (Jing Zheng Fa [2014] No.19),” which took effect on June 30, 2014. The Circular cancelled 22 administrative approval items, including for the establishment of foreign chambers of commerce (preliminary approval), for setting up offices of offshore news and publication institutions and for verifying the qualifications of international bidding institutions. The complete list of the cancelled items can be found here (Chinese).

Shanghai Implements Commercial Registration System

On July 28, Shanghai’s Xuhui District officially launched reforms to its commercial registration system. The Xuhui Industrial and Commercial Administrative Authorities, Quality Supervision, Taxation and other relevant departments jointly established a management and service mechanism that will allow enterprises to obtain a business license and other relevant certifications using a single form. Previously, enterprises were required to submit various documents to several departments for approval. The streamlined commercial registration system was first implemented in the Shanghai Free Trade Zone (FTZ) to simplify the approval process for corporate establishment and modification. Based on the new service mechanism, eligible domestic and foreign-invested enterprises (FIEs) can complete the approval procedure within four days.

China Releases Regulations on Cross-Border E-Commerce

The General Administration of Customs (GAC) recently released the “Announcement on the Supervision of Entry/Exit Goods in Cross-Border E-Commerce (GAC Announcement [2014] No.56),” which took effect on August 1, 2014. According to the Announcement, the operators of customs supervision areas engaged in storing relevant imported goods shall process an e-commerce business filing with Customs. Further, enterprises or individuals engaged in cross-border e-commerce, payment and logistics shall submit orders, payments and logistics information to Customs before declaring goods to enter or exit China.

Shanghai FTZ Regulations Officially Implemented

On July 25, the Shanghai Standing Committee of the People’s Congress approved the “China (Shanghai) Free Trade Zone (FTZ) Regulations” (‘Regulations’), which took effect on August 1, 2014. The Regulations, designated as the basic administrative charter of the Shanghai FTZ, consists of nine chapters and 57 articles covering the zone’s management system, investment methods, international trade, financial services and taxation administration. The Regulations officially implemented the subscribed capital and enterprise annual reporting system as has been operative in the FTZ since spring, 2014.

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