BEIJING, July 10 (Xinhua) -- China's 18 pilot free trade zones (FTZs) used a total of 60.25 billion yuan (about 8.61 billion U.S. dollars) of foreign investment in the first five months this year, the Ministry of Commerce (MOC) said Friday.
The 18 pilot FTZs have attracted 17 percent of the total foreign investment in China during the same period, yet they occupy less than 0.4 percent of the country's land area, said MOC official Tang Wenhong at a press conference.
From January to May, 51.87 billion yuan of foreign investment was used by the oldest 12 pilot FTZs, set up before August 2019, up 18.4 percent year on year.
China's achievements in COVID-19 prevention and control have laid a solid foundation for a sound business environment, which has attracted these foreign-invested enterprises, Tang said.
A recent MOC survey shows foreign-funded enterprises believe that the top three strengths of the pilot FTZs are efficient government services, trade facilitation, and investment liberalization.
China has also unveiled its 2020 negative list for foreign investment in pilot FTZs, cutting the number of prohibited industries to 30 from 37, and it will take effect on July 23 to create a broader market for foreign-invested enterprises, Tang said.
Approved by the State Council in August 2019, six pilot FTZs were inaugurated in Shandong, Jiangsu, Guangxi, Hebei, Yunnan, and Heilongjiang, bringing the total number of the country's pilot FTZs to 18. Enditem