Qingdao FTZ to deepen cooperation with Central Asia
A first-ever forum on industry and investment cooperation between China and five Central Asian countries - namely Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan - kicked off on Feb 16 in Qingdao in East China's Shandong province.
Since the approval of the Qingdao Area of the China (Shandong) Pilot Free Trade Zone (Qingdao FTZ) , it has been working to expand cooperation with Central Asia, according to Zhao Shiyu, director of the Qingdao FTZ administrative committee.
In recent years, the zone has created a new model for the "Qingdao-Central Asia" used new energy car export business based on the demand for motor vehicles in Central Asia where some countries are exempt from import tariffs on new energy vehicles.
In 2022, the number of used new energy cars exported from Qingdao FTZ to the five Central Asian countries increased by more than 200 percent year-on-year, and the trade volume totaled $6.26 million.
"Next, we intend to deepen economic and trade exchanges with Central Asian countries, and roll out a batch of measures to facilitate trade and investment," Zhao said.
The zone also plans to focus on the innovation of financial services, explore the development of digital RMB payments in the fields of international trade, bulk commodity trading and shipping logistics, and build a convenient channel for "sea-rail intermodal transport" to connect with logistics enterprises in Central Asia. It also plans to deepen international technical cooperation, expand the scale of cross-border e-commerce, and build an international talent community.