Revised Negative List Increases Market Access

Yangpu international container port at Yangpu economic development zone in South China’s Hainan province

On Friday, the National Development and Reform Commission published the updated version of the FDI market entry negative list to solicit public opinions.

The general trend is to further vitalize the FDI market and allow enterprises to play a bigger role. The latest version has six sectors with restricted market entry and requires permission be obtained for 111, which is lower than the 123 of last year’s list.

The negative list system was first introduced in 2014. In the list, the State Council clearly states sectors from which market entities are excluded or must obtain permission to enter. In other words, the negative list system strictly follows the rule of law. Since it was first implemented, it has played a positive role in improving the business environment.

The lists are adjusted each year to adapt to changes in the market, so as to provide better administrative services to the market and solve any problem that might emerge. They enable the precise opening and closing of industry access gates to avoid gray rhino events.

A closer look at the 2021 version of the negative list shows that it has made major advances compared with that of last year. For example, it clearly forbids the “mining” of virtual currency such as Bitcoin, which highlights the government’s firm determination to better monitor the market. Besides, it clearly forbids non-financial institutions from including words such as “financing” or “equity crowdfunding” in their names, so as to further regulate the financial market. Also, the Cyberspace Administration of China is added to the list of supervisory agencies over such activities, which will further close any loopholes that may emerge.

The latest list also requires enterprises to apply for approval if they use any special cosmetics and new cosmetic materials that might involve high risks, which means tighter supervision over the products and better care of people’s lives and health.

All these will help to further regulate the market so as to make it prosper in the long run.

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