China will study and promote the reasonable reduction of the "negative list" for foreign investment, further relax restrictions, while ensuring the "national treatment" for foreign investors amid the nation's pledge to pursue a higher level opening-up, Commerce Minister Wang Wentao said in Beijing on Thursday.
The minister said opening-up of the modern services sector will be accelerated. In the field of services, a nationwide "negative list" of cross-border service trade will be issued, and a new model of cross-border service trade management will be implemented on a larger scale.
"We must optimize the foreign investment environment, thoroughly implement the Foreign Investment Law and its implementation regulations, and implement high-standard national treatment for foreign-funded enterprises," Wang said.
Wang said that issues that are raised by foreign-funded enterprises, such as government procurement, bidding, and standards formulation, are the key areas to be promoted in the government's work.
"We will study and introduce policies and measures with relevant other departments to ensure equal participation of foreign-funded enterprises. We will establish and improve the inter-departmental complaint coordination mechanism at all levels, improve the level of complaint handling, increase the protection of the legitimate rights and interests of overseas investors, and create a first-class business environment that is market-oriented, ruled by law, and internationalized," said the minister.
China remains an attractive destination for foreign investment, as foreign companies' opinions resonate with the country's official data.
Foreign direct investment (FDI) into the Chinese mainland, in actual use, expanded 14.5 percent year-on-year to 127.69 billion yuan in January. In US dollar terms, the FDI inflow went up 10 percent year on year to $19.02 billion.