Work Plan of Shenzhen for Optimizing Internationalized Business Environment (2023-2025)
This plan is formulated for the thorough implementation of the spirit of CPC Central Committee General Secretary Xi Jinping’s important exposition on creating a market-oriented, law-based, and internationalized first-class business environment, to further stimulate market vitality and development momentum, accelerate fostering an internationalized business environment with global competitiveness, and promote high-quality economic and social development.
I. General requirements
Guided by Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era, it is required to comprehensively and systemically study and implement the spirit of the 20th CPC National Congress; to thoroughly implement the spirit of Xi’s series of important speeches and instructions to Guangdong and Shenzhen; to align with the highest international standards and levels, accelerate institutional openness in rules, regulations, management, and standards; to continue to promote trade and investment liberalization and facilitation; to take the lead in establishing a new system for higher-level open economy; to continuously enhance Shenzhen’s strong attraction and international competitiveness to global high-quality resources; and to provide strong support for accelerating Shenzhen’s development into a more globally influential economic center city and a modern international metropolis, building a pilot demonstration area for socialism with Chinese characteristics and creating a model city for a great modern socialist country.
II. Main tasks
(I) Build an open industrial innovation ecosystem
1. Accelerate pooling international innovation resources. Shenzhen will establish international innovation platforms, strengthen the connection of innovation resources and information, and expand scientific and technological exchanges and cooperation with key countries and regions; strengthen the industry-university-research cooperation system with enterprises as the main body, and build an achievement industrialization innovation system with multi-party participation and collaborative advancement; promote the implementation of intergovernmental international sci-tech cooperation projects, and support innovation entities in Shenzhen to independently design and organize international sci-tech cooperation projects with overseas research institutions, universities, and enterprises through the establishment of joint laboratories and collaborative research and development projects; strengthen the support for the industrialization of sci-tech achievements and enhance the comprehensive service capabilities of sci-tech service institutions; and encourage various organizations to hold globally influential international conferences, large-scale sci-tech exchange and promotion meetings and sci-tech cooperation project matchmaking meetings, and actively build a comprehensive innovation service system.
(Leading unit: Shenzhen Municipal Science, Technology and Innovation Commission; participating units: Shenzhen Municipal Industry and Information Technology Bureau, Office of Foreign Affairs Office Work Committee of CPC Shenzhen Municipal Committee)
2. Create an internationalized system for producer services. Shenzhen will enhance its service capabilities for the development of advanced manufacturing clusters, and promote producer services such as industrial design, testing and certification, industrial e-commerce, technology research and development, and comprehensive supply chains to develop towards specialization and strengthen high-end value chains; increase the openness of the professional services industry, formulate and implement special policies for the development of service-oriented manufacturing, and create a professional services industry cluster; strengthen cooperation and exchanges in the professional services industries of Shenzhen, Hong Kong, and Macao, and promote the high-end development of services such as design, law, accounting and auditing, management consulting, human resources, and inspection and testing certification; and accelerate the development of technologically advanced service industries and enhance the internationalization level of enterprise innovation. By 2025, the added value of the modern service industry will account for over 77% of the service industry.
(Leading unit: Shenzhen Municipal Industry and Information Technology Bureau; participating units: Shenzhen Municipal Development and Reform Commission, Shenzhen Municipal Administration for Market Regulation, Shenzhen Municipal Commerce Bureau, Qianhai Authority, Shenzhen Municipal Justice Bureau, Shenzhen Municipal Human Resources and Social Security Bureau)
3. Strengthen international industrial cooperation and mutual recognition of standards. Shenzhen will support enterprises and industry associations to strengthen their contact and cooperation with international industry organizations and standards organizations; encourage enterprises and industry associations to actively participate in routine dialogues or international conferences with international industry organizations and standards organizations, and accelerate promoting regional industry access to and mutual recognition of standards; support enterprises to lead or participate in the development of international standards in the fields of new generation mobile communication technology, artificial intelligence, cloud computing and edge computing; promote the establishment of a group of international industry and standards organizations, and promote international economic and technological exchanges and cooperation.
(Leading unit: Shenzhen Municipal Industry and Information Technology Bureau; participating units: Shenzhen Municipal Administration for Market Regulation, Shenzhen Municipal Civil Affairs Bureau)
(II) Build an international service system for global resources allocation
4. Improve the service level for international talents. Shenzhen will establish a recruitment, salary, appraisal, management and service mechanism in line with international standards for high-level talents, and enhance its talent absorption and bearing capacity for globally top-tier talents; enhance the Conference on International Exchange of Professionals, and support human resources institutions, industry associations, and social organizations in creating talent attraction activities; promote the pilot reform of talent evaluation systems, draw on international talent evaluation standards, and establish a talent evaluation system guided by innovative value, ability, and contribution; explore building a cross-regional qualification mutual recognition mechanism for foreign talents, and accelerate promoting cross-regional processing and recognition of foreign high-end talent (Class A) work permits recognized by other mainland cities in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area; and strongly support Shenzhen enterprises to carry out business activities in Hong Kong and Macao. For key supporting enterprises recognized by relevant municipal departments, the city will provide policy conveniences such as tax exemption and on-demand application for these enterprises applying for business registration in Hong Kong and Macao.
(Leading unit: Organization Department of the CPC Shenzhen Municipal Committee; participating units: Shenzhen Municipal Science, Technology and Innovation Commission, Shenzhen Municipal Finance Bureau, Shenzhen Municipal Human Resources and Social Security Bureau, Shenzhen Tax Service of State Taxation Administration, Office of Foreign Affairs Office Work Committee of CPC Shenzhen Municipal Committee, Shenzhen Municipal Public Security Bureau, Shenzhen Entry and Exit Border Inspection Station, and authorities of various industries)
5. Enhance the internationalization function of the financial market. Shenzhen will join hands with Hong Kong to promote the construction of the Qianhai Shenzhen-Hong Kong International Financial City, establish and improve an open new system and cross-border cooperation system that connects Hong Kong and Macao, and gradually form a multi-level and multifunctional financial market and a complete financial service industry chain; attract and gather high-level financial headquarters and licensed institutions; facilitate the use of cross-border RMB income from capital projects on the mainland, carry out innovative applications such as digital currency research and mobile payments, and promote international cooperation and cross-border use of digital RMB; enhance the convenience of international professional services institutions conducting business in Shenzhen, and encourage greater service support for emerging financial fields; and strengthen exchanges with global financial center cities and deepen cooperation in financial markets, institutions, talents, and other fields.
(Leading unit: Qianhai Authority; participating units: Shenzhen Municipal Local Financial Regulatory Bureau, the People’s Bank of China Shenzhen Central Sub-branch, Office of Foreign Affairs Office Work Committee of CPC Shenzhen Municipal Committee)
6. Promote the safe and efficient cross-border flow of data elements. Shenzhen will support the innovation of a digital trade system in the Qianhai-Shekou Free Trade Zone and the building of an international scientific and technological information hub in the Hetao Shenzhen-Hong Kong Science and Technology Innovation Cooperation Zone, accelerate the construction of an international digital trade environment with convenient circulation of digital elements, improved digital trade rules, and innovation-driven digital technology; focus on connecting international rules in the fields of finance, transportation, health, and medical care, actively participate in the formulation of international rules for cross-border data flow, and actively promote cross-border data transmission (outbound) security management within the framework of national and industry cross-border data transmission security management systems, establish data security management mechanisms such as data security protection capacity assessment and certification, data circulation backup review, cross-border data circulation and transaction risk assessment; and align with economic and trade rules such as the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership and the Digital Economy Partnership Agreement, support industry associations, enterprises, and other entities to build digital trade research think tanks, research and explore the trends and countermeasures in rules for the digital trade order, and provide cross-border data flow, trade rules, and other consulting services for digital trade enterprises.
(Leading unit: Qianhai Authority; participating units: Shenzhen Municipal Commerce Bureau, Office of the Cyberspace Affairs Commission of the CPC Shenzhen Municipal Committee, Shenzhen Municipal Science, Technology and Innovation Commission, Shenzhen Municipal Industry and Information Technology Bureau, Shenzhen Municipal Government Services and Data Management Bureau, Shenzhen Municipal Development and Reform Commission, the People’s Bank of China Shenzhen Central Sub-branch, Futian District)
(III) Build a high-standard investment and trade protection mechanism
7. Make greater efforts to attract and utilize foreign investment. Shenzhen will strengthen policy stability, timely disclose industrial space and other related information on platforms such as “深i企”, and stabilize the development expectations of foreign-funded enterprises in Shenzhen; fully solicit opinions from various enterprises, strengthen policy publicity and interpretation for foreign-funded enterprises, and promote reform for the convenience of the people and enterprises in the process of formulating enterprise-related policies, industrial space planning, and commercial layout planning; vigorously cultivate open market entities and support Shenzhen multinational corporations to further absorb advanced global factors of production; promote headquarters enterprises to expand business and create an investment destination for multinational corporations; fully implement the pre-establishment national treatment plus negative list system, and promote consistent management of domestic and foreign investments beyond the negative list; comprehensively clean up provisions that do not comply with the Foreign Investment Law of the People’s Republic of China, guide foreign investment in key areas such as advanced manufacturing, strategic emerging industries, and future industries, and support the establishment of foreign research and development institutions; and implement policies such as temporarily exempting foreign investors from withholding income tax for direct investment based on profit distribution. By 2025, the actual use of foreign investment in high-tech industries will reach over US$4 billion.
(Leading unit: Shenzhen Municipal Commerce Bureau; participating units: Shenzhen Municipal Industry and Information Technology Bureau, Shenzhen Municipal Development and Reform Commission, Shenzhen Municipal Planning and Natural Resources Bureau, Shenzhen Tax Service of State Taxation Administration, People’s Bank of China Shenzhen Central Sub-branch, various districts, new area and Shenshan Special Cooperation Zone)
8. Support enterprises to go global. Shenzhen will fully leverage the role of the city’s overseas institutions, support the city’s enterprises and industry associations to go overseas to host business matchmaking events, connect with overseas markets, promote Shenzhen brands, and provide after-sales service; establish an independent and controllable overseas marketing system, expand value-added services such as overseas warehouse product display, final delivery, after-sales maintenance, and supply chain finance; build a global cross-border e-commerce express mail distribution center and support the construction of cross-border e-commerce return center warehouses in areas such as comprehensive bonded zones; deepen the pilot program for transparent declaration of cross-border e-commerce exports; and support cross-border livestreaming e-commerce in multiple languages and categories, build a global livestreaming e-commerce industry cluster, attract global buyers and enhance the attraction of Shenzhen’s foreign trade.
(Leading unit: Shenzhen Municipal Commerce Bureau; participating units: Shenzhen Customs, Shenzhen Municipal Transport Bureau, Shenzhen Airport Group, People’s Bank of China Shenzhen Central Sub-branch, Shenzhen Tax Service of State Taxation Administration)
9. Create an efficient and convenient cross-border trade service system. Shenzhen will optimize and upgrade its international trade facilitation services, integrate international trade businesses such as port and ship agents, logistics, customs clearance, foreign exchange collection and payment, financing, tax refunds, import and export fees, policy consulting, and risk prevention and control; explore and promote the application of electronic bills of lading for international ships and improve the efficiency of cross-border trade business processing; step up efforts in the cultivation of AEO certified enterprises; deepen the construction of “smart checkpoints” and pilot the reform of customs clearance modes, implement the reform for ports and airports, optimize the customs clearance mode for goods at Shenzhen ports and airports; promote the development of lithium battery cargo warehousing and air freight business, and strengthen cross-border logistics services by sea, land, and air; and guide airlines to open new passenger and cargo routes connecting countries and regions along the Belt and Road, as well as member countries of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement, and increase routes to major global cargo hubs.
(Leading unit: Shenzhen Municipal Commerce Bureau; participating units: Shenzhen Municipal Transport Bureau, Office of Port of Entry and Exit of Shenzhen Municipality, Shenzhen Customs)
(IV) Build a high-quality livable and business-friendly environment
10. Promote the internationalization of urban living environment. Shenzhen will strengthen the construction of an international language environment, optimize foreign language guidance services for key public places, public facilities and road signs; enhance the international appeal of education and actively introduce quality educational resources from overseas; accelerate the introduction and cultivation of minority language translation talents, and increase the supply of translation professionals; improve the quality of medical services, accelerate the construction of a medical service system in line with internationally accepted rules, explore building a third-party international medical insurance one-stop settlement platform, and establish a cross-border medical expense payment mechanism in line with International Hospital Quality Accreditation Standards; give full play to the role of the Qianhai International Talent Hub as a one-stop service center and provide convenience for expats as well as Hong Kong and Macao people to work and live in Shenzhen; further facilitate mobile payments for expats as well as Hong Kong and Macao residents in Shenzhen; compile and release a Shenzhen shopping guide, comprehensively promote and showcase Shenzhen’s consumption culture, and hold a series of Shenzhen-Hong Kong consumption activities; develop internationalized commercial areas; and build a green and beautiful Shenzhen and the International Mangrove Center with high standards.
(Leading unit: Office of Foreign Affairs Office Work Committee of CPC Shenzhen Municipal Committee; participating units: Shenzhen Municipal Education Bureau, Shenzhen Municipal Health Commission, People’s Bank of China Shenzhen Central Sub-branch, Qianhai Authority, Shenzhen Municipal Government Services and Data Management Bureau, Shenzhen Municipal Justice Bureau, Shenzhen Municipal Planning and Natural Resources Bureau, Shenzhen Municipal Urban Administration and Law Enforcement Bureau, Shenzhen Municipal Administration for Market Regulation, Shenzhen Municipal Commerce Bureau)
11. Innovate comprehensive legal services for intellectual property. Shenzhen will establish a legal service chain with government support and participation from law firms, notary offices, judicial appraisal institutions, arbitration institutions and other legal service institutions to provide legal services for the creation, protection and application of intellectual property rights; actively explore and promote the protection of intellectual property rights in key industrial fields and key technological links; strengthen the special enforcement of intellectual property rights such as trademarks and patents, strictly protect the intellectual property rights of foreign-invested enterprises in accordance with the law, and optimize border protection measures for intellectual property rights; explore establishing a guiding service mechanism for responding to overseas intellectual property disputes, provide comprehensive overseas rights protection services for overseas enterprises, and promote enterprise compliance in terms of intellectual property; and build the national intellectual property protection demonstration zone with high standards.
(Leading unit: Shenzhen Municipal Administration for Market Regulation; participating units: Shenzhen Municipal Justice Bureau, Shenzhen Municipal Commerce Bureau, Shenzhen Intermediate People’s Court, Shenzhen Municipal Public Security Bureau, Shenzhen Customs)
12. Strengthen city promotion and comprehensive marketing. Shenzhen will implement an international communication action plan, encourage all citizens to join in international communication, and tell the Shenzhen story of the Chinese path to modernization in an all-rounded manner; polish the city’s calling cards including information such as being identified as a UNESCO City of Design and a global model for promoting reading among its citizens, give full play to the roles of major international exhibitions and high-level international sports events, and promote the city’s image in multiple dimensions; promote the linkage and integrated communication of the city images of Shenzhen and Hong Kong, and tell the stories of the two cities well; strengthen the building of the EyeShenzhen multilingual websites, the city’s official multilingual information portal; and enhance exchanges and mutual learning with global cities, and make good use of the international sister and friendship city network.
(Leading unit: Publicity Department of the CPC Shenzhen Municipal Committee; participating units: Office of Foreign Affairs Office Work Committee of CPC Shenzhen Municipal Committee, Shenzhen Municipal Commerce Bureau, Shenzhen Municipal Culture, Radio, Television, Tourism and Sports Bureau, Hong Kong and Macao Affairs Office of Shenzhen Municipal People’s Government)
III. Supporting measures
(I) Strengthen organizational leadership. Party committees and governments at all levels should place the construction of an internationalized business environment on the top of their agendas. The municipal business environment optimization reform leading group should strengthen organizational leadership and overall planning. The leaders of each relevant unit are responsible for refining the unit’s implementation measures and annual work proposals in accordance with this work plan, and should form a task book, roadmap, timetable, and accountability mechanism to ensure that all tasks are implemented effectively.
(II) Enhance collaborative advancement. The municipal business environment optimization reform leading group will work with the municipal commerce bureau to establish and improve a regular communication and exchange mechanism with enterprises, regularly collect and report on the implementation, timely coordinate and solve problems encountered in the progress of work, and urge relevant units at the district level to perform their respective responsibilities and join forces to optimize the internationalized business environment.
(III) Increase publicity and promotion. Efforts are needed to strengthen cooperation with mainstream media outlets at home and abroad, fully utilize various communication platforms and resources, continuously increase publicity and promotion efforts, comprehensively and systematically promote Shenzhen’s internationalized business environment reform measures and enterprise-related policies, and enhance the international influence and attractiveness of Shenzhen’s business environment.