accelerate the process to fully lower the market access threshold for foreign investments in
banking, securities and insurance, the premier said. Service sectors, including medical care and educ
ation, will be opened up along with transportation, infrastructure and energy, he said.
Li said China will further make it easier for foreign companies to set up a venture capital presence and will improve regulati
ons on foreign investors’ strategic investments in listed companies and their mergers with and acquisitions of domestic enterprises.
Also, preferential policies for investments from Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan w
ill remain unchanged, and greater development opportunities will be offered for them, Li said.
Wang Huiyao, president of the Center for China and Globalizaton, said he was impressed by Li’s speech to cl
ean up rules and regulations inconsistent with the Foreign Investment Law as well as to launch a more streamlined negative list.
“It shows China’s attitude of further opening-up, which is a higher-level and more concrete commitment of China,” he said.
Leif Johansson, chairman of global biopharmaceutical giant AstraZeneca, said
Li’s speech reflects the determination to create a more open, fair and transpare
nts in Sichuan, Shaanxi and Shandong provinces as well as Beijing will eventually be able to sell bonds at count
ers in commercial banks directly to retail investors, and the practice will be expanded nationwide after an additional period of time.
The ministry said individuals do not need to pay taxes on the bonds’ interest income, and this policy is likely to attract more investors.
Selling local government bonds to retail investors should facilitate liquidity
in the secondary market, improve the market-oriented bond pricing mechanism and pu
sh issuers to enhance the quality of information disclosure, said Amanda Du, a Moody’s vice-president and senior analyst.
“Higher coupon rates compared with treasury bonds, and the tax exemption on the interest income, make
local government bonds more attractive for retail investors,” she said. “The fast takeup by retail investors also indicates that the
bonds have won high recognition among individual buyers, supported by the local governments’ high credit ratings.”
diplomatic ties. During their meetings, Xi agreed with French President Emmanuel Macron and Prime Minister Edouard Philippe to f
orge a more solid, stable and vibrant China-France comprehensive strategic partnership, and continue to explore the way for major countries to get al
ong with each other, which should feature independence, mutual understanding, foresight, mutual benefit and win-win outcomes, Wang said.
In the joint statement issued by China and France on jointly safeguarding multilateralism and improving global governa
nce, the two sides pledged to build international relations of mutual respect, equality, justice, and win-win coop
eration on the basis of respecting international laws and the basic principles of international norms, Wang said.
Speaking of Xi’s visit to Monaco, Wang said leaders of the two cou
ntries have agreed to firmly stick to the correct direction of bilateral relations, adhere to open
ness and cooperation, and pursue more win-win results so as to jointly elevate the China-Monaco relations into a new era.
During Xi’s talks with Prince Albert II, head of state of the Prin
cipality of Monaco, the Chinese president said both sides should adhere to openness and cooperation a
nd pursue more win-win results, adding that China welcomes Monaco to actively participate in the joint development of the Belt and Road.
gmatism over its decision of endorsing the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), saying Xi and Mattarella agreed
that China and Italy, which are at the two ends of the ancient Silk Road, are natural partners in constructing the Belt and Road.
Conte, according to Wang, said the BRI will bring great opportunities to Italy. He also agre
ed to attend the second Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation to be held in Beijing next month.
France is one of the earliest European countries that have expressed the willingness to take pa
rt in the BRI cooperation. During Xi’s visit to France, the two countries signed agreements on the third round of the BRI-related dem
onstration projects in third-party markets and kicked off a third-party market fund, Wang said.
At the closing session of a global governance forum co-hosted by China and France, Macron
said the BRI is significant and can play an important role in world peace, stability and development, adding that the EU could align
its development strategy with the BRI in an innovative way and jointly promote Eurasian connectivity.
development in China, and the EU welcomes China’s willingness to share its development opportunities.
Chinese enterprises are welcome to invest in European countries, said the European leaders, adding that they will not adopt restrictive measures against specific com
panies, and are willing to provide a fair, open and transparent business environment for all foreign enterprises.
During the visit, Peng Liyuan, Xi’s wife, also attended a number of events aimed at deepeni
ng cultural and educational exchanges between China and the European nations.
As a special envoy of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) for the advanceme
nt of girls’ and women’s education, Peng was invited to visit the headquarters of the UNESCO in Paris.
Wang said Peng’s visit highlighted China’s image of a hardworking, responsible maj
or country that actively participates in international education, gender equality and other affairs.
cles are starting to gain momentum in the private market. With the overall vehicle market remaini
ng flat, sales of new energy vehicles last year reached 1.25 million, up 61.7 percent year-on-year, and
the figure is expected to reach 1.6 million this year according to the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers.
China plans to stop subsidies on new energy cars by the end of 2020. To ensure a smooth transi
tion, the government decides to achieve this goal by enacting policy in several phases. This year’s subs
idy standard was slashed 50 percent on average from 2018, Xinhua reported, citing a person with knowledge of the matter.
The source said the proportion cut is basically consistent with falling ratios of general cost for co
mplete vehicles, while pointing out with the rapid expansion of the NEV industry some enterprises tend
ed to become reliant on long-standing subsidies, leading to weak competitiveness.
The statement also asked local governments to remove subsidies on purchases o
f new energy cars after a three-month grace period starting Tuesday. Instead, more funds will be used
to build infrastructure, including charging and hydrogen refueling facilities, and to facilitate relevant services.