Shanghai FTZ to Get Customs Boon

China plans to launch a new free port within the Shanghai Pilot Free Trade Zone to increase the openness and sophistication of customs, trade, financial, and foreign currency systems, according to China Daily.

A planned free port in which transiting goods are exempt from customs duty would become part of the China Shanghai Pilot Free-Trade Zone.

The Chinese Ministry of Commerce on October 26, 2017 said a free port would be included in the new FTZ, which opened in 2013.

It would comprise the existing zones of Shanghai Waigaoqiao bonded zone, Waigaoqiao port, Yangshan Free Trade Port Area.

Construction on the new free port has entered the planning stage, but still needs the go-ahead from the central government.

Already, Shanghai municipal government is working with the Commerce Ministry establish the new free port.

In another port city in China, the China Zhejiang Pilot FTZ also plans to develop a free port.

Zhejiang’s free port is expected to further liberalize trade in bulk commodities like crude and refined oil.

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Wu Wei, Deputy Director of the Shanghai Municipal Office for Port Services said: "The world's major free trade centers, such as Dubai and New York, are all defining themselves as international free ports or global logistics centers because this practice is an effective way to drive regional growth in the trade, finance and service sectors."

Li Guanghui, Vice-President of the Chinese Academy of International Trade and Economic Cooperation in Beijing said: "Breakthroughs in areas of trade facilitation measures, ship fuel prices, financial support, customs supervision, inspection and quarantine must be available for a free port within the FTZ.”