BEIJING, Aug. 27 (Xinhua) -- China aims to reduce the cost of its logistics sector to alleviate the burden on companies and improve their business environment, the Ministry of Transport said.
The country plans to reduce the proportion of logistics costs to the total value of goods carried by the sector by 0.5 percentage point from the current 4.9 percent in the next three years, according to the ministry.
To achieve that, a slew of measures will be taken, including cutting highway tolls and removing illegal fees charged by airports, ports and railways.
It is part of the country's efforts to bring down corporate costs as a whole, in line with the ongoing supply-side structural reform designed to facilitate industrial upgrade and boost the slowing economy.
The State Council released a work scheme on Monday on cutting corporate costs, planning lower tax burdens, cheap financing, reduced red tape as well as more affordable land use, energy consumption and logistics.
Logistics costs account for a significant proportion of corporate costs in China. The ratio of logistics costs to gross domestic product (GDP) had been over 16 percent for years, the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC), China's top economic planner, said in an article posted on its website on Friday.
The ratio was 14.6 percent in the first half of 2016, down from 15.4 percent a year earlier.
By reducing the ratio of logistics costs to the GDP by 1 percentage point, China can help industrial businesses save more than 900 billion yuan (135 billion U.S. dollars).
Despite declines in the past few years, much room remains for further decreases, the article said, adding such ratio in China is about twice that of the United States and 1.3 times the level of India.
The logistics sector saw the total value of goods carried between January and June this year grew 6.2 percent year on year, faster than the 5.7 percent in the same period of last year, according to the article.
China's total logistics costs rose 2.7 percent year on year in the first half of this year, slower than the 4.5-percent growth recorded in the same period last year.