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​Qingdao FTZ forges ahead with reform, opening-up

chinadaily.com.cn| Updated: November 2, 2022


Qingdao FTZ stands in the first echelon among the 67 areas of the 21 pilot free trade zones in the country. [Photo/WeChat ID: qingdaozimao]

The China (Shandong) Pilot Free Trade Zone Qingdao Area, or Qingdao FTZ, has been forging ahead with reform and opening-up and has made fruitful achievements, giving a boost to the high-quality development of the region.

The China (Shandong) Pilot Free Trade Zone, a bridgehead for Shandong province's reform and opening-up, was approved by the State Council in August 2019 and consists of three areas, among which the Qingdao Area is the largest area and undertakes the most pilot tasks. It covers 52 square kilometers in the Qingdao West Coast New Area.

Last month, Qingdao FTZ celebrated its third anniversary. According to a comprehensive evaluation report by the Chinese Academy of International Trade and Economic Cooperation, the Qingdao FTZ now stands in the first echelon among the 67 areas of the 21 pilot free trade zones in the country in terms of work promotion, innovation achievements and operations.

Qingdao FTZ has been a pioneer in institutional innovation over the past three years. It has rolled out 226 institutional innovation measures and 79 of them were deemed as pioneering in China, accounting for 35 percent of the total, which is higher than the national average. Among them, two have been replicated and promoted nationwide and 29 have been replicated and promoted across the province.

More than 30 percent of the measures are related to trade facilitation. Last year, Qingdao FTZ's international trade volume brought in 187 billion yuan ($25.8 billion), accounting for about 23 percent of Qingdao city's total.

In the past three years, Qingdao FTZ has implemented a slew of reform measures to improve administrative services, such as streamlining administrative review processes in terms of procedures, documents, and time needed, which has helped optimize its business environment. Over the past three years, 25,000 new enterprises have settled in the area, which is 1.4 times the total number since the zone's establishment.