Guangdong Province Rolls Out Detailed Measures to Support Qianhai’s Development

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Sept. 3 –The Guangdong Provincial Government released “Several Opinions on Facilitating the Development and Openness of the Qianhai Area (yuefu [2013] No.78, hereinafter referred to as the ‘Opinions’)” on August 26, which roll out detailed measures to support and accelerate the development of Shenzhen’s Qianhai Area. Detailed information can be found below.

The Opinions give Qianhai the provincial-level power to manage its service industry and explore its own model of opening-up, essentially meaning the region no longer needs to obtain the Shenzhen government’s approval for development plans. Meanwhile, Qianhai has also been authorized as a municipality with independent planning status to approve and manage its own non-financial industrial projects. However, for the powers that cannot be entrusted or delegated to lower levels, the Qianhai Administration Bureau can submit applications directly to the Guangdong provincial government for approval.

The opinions also stipulate that Guangdong Province will actively support the transformation of the Qianhaiwan Bonded Area into a free trade zone. The area will implement policies related to the transportation, logistics and cargo inspection sections under the Closer Economic Partnership Arrangement framework. Meanwhile, in order to build up the Shenzhen and Hong Kong international shipping service platform, various policies regarding the following aspects will also be implemented at the Qianhaiwan Bonded Area:

  • Trade facilitation;
  • Shipping services;
  • Offshore trade;
  • Offshore finance; and
  • Tax refunds at the port of departure.

With regard to the development of the modern services industry, the Opinions have put forward 13 polices to support the development of the financial industry, modern logistics, information services, technology services and other professional services in Qianhai. More importantly, the Opinions explicitly state that Guangdong Province will help to build Qianhai into the core functioning area of the Pearl River Delta Comprehensive Financial Reform and Innovation Pilot Zone. This marks the first time that the Guangdong government has classified the Qianhai area into a core functioning area of the province.

The Opinions also aim to improve Qianhai’s appeal to Hong Kong financial institutions by lowering the requirements regarding the asset scale, shareholding and business scope for Hong Kong investors.

In addition, the opinions also offer detailed measures to support Qianhai’s development in the following aspects:

  • Supporting Qianhai to set up a Shenzhen and Hong Kong special talent zone;
  • Supporting Qianhai to explore land system reforms;
  • Supporting Qianhai to build a low-carbon ecological urban living environment;
  • Supporting Qianhai to improve surrounding transportation conditions;
  • Supporting Qianhai to facilitate customs clearance; and
  • Supporting Qianhai to explore new ways of running statutory bodies.

By the end of August 20, 2013, a total of 1,465 firms with combined registered capital of RMB167 billion have registered in Qianhai. All the above-mentioned favorable policies are expected to be fully implemented by the end of this year.

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