Negative list for foreign investment in Shanghai Huangpu's key service sectors
02 April 2014
The Huangpu District in Shanghai released its version of "negative list" earlier. This negative list, in the form of the Special Administrative Measures of Huangpu District on Foreign Investment in Key Service Sectors (First Edition), sets out measures on the access of foreign investment projects and establishment of foreign-invested enterprises (FIEs). It also spells out the framework and salient features of the "negative list" system.
Huangpu District is the core business district of Shanghai, with its economic aggregate ranking top among all central business districts and the share of its tertiary industry reaching over 95%. During the 12th Five-Year Plan period, special emphasis is to be placed by the district on the development of six service sectors, namely financial services, professional services, commercial circulation, cultural and creative industries, shipping and logistics, and leisure and tourism. The negative list released lately consists of 63 special administrative measures covering nine sectors, 22 first-level sub-sectors, 87 second-level sub-sectors and 211 third-level sub-sectors. This negative list will be updated in step with that of the Shanghai free trade zone and in accordance with changes in the liberalisation measures governing service sectors promulgated by the state and Shanghai.
To support the negative list system, Huangpu District will simultaneously implement a series of measures including administrative approval system reform and service sector innovation pilots. First of all, the district will take the lead in streamlining approval procedures on a pilot basis in three sectors including commerce, general consultancy and design services. These three sectors together account for over 70% of the applications for foreign investment approval in Huangpu District, yet such applications basically do not require prior approval. By introducing "formality examination", the time needed to approve the establishment of FIEs in the district will be greatly shortened. Secondly, four channels – green channel, express channel, special channel and general channel – will be set up to process approvals. Under normal circumstances, the green channel applies to all newly established FIEs in the above mentioned three service sectors. The timeframe for processing approvals is four working days, 80% shorter than the official approval period of 20 working days, and 50% shorter than the eight working days currently pledged by Huangpu District to foreign investors.
At present, great efforts are also being made by Huangpu District to get the green light for implementing the relevant policies on comprehensive reforms pilots concurrently with the Shanghai free trade zone and Pudong. One example is the pilot policy for two-way cross-border RMB capital pool for enterprises.
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