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China Further Opens Market to Hong Kong and Macau Service Providers

To facilitate the implementation of the Agreement on Trade in Services under the Mainland and Hong Kong Closer Economic Partnership Arrangement (CEPA) and the Agreement on Trade in Services under the Mainland and Macau Closer Economic Partnership Arrangement (Agreements), the State Council has issued a decision on temporarily adjusting the relevant administrative approval items and preferential market access measures of the mainland for service providers from Hong Kong and Macau, with effect from 1 June 2016.

The decision pointed out: For Hong Kong and Macau service providers investing in those areas of trade in services liberalised under the Agreements, the approval of contracts and articles of association on the establishment of and change in companies shall temporarily not be governed by the provisions on the establishment of and change in foreign-funded enterprises. Only filing for the record is needed. This change does not apply to restrictive measures reserved in the Agreements, the establishment of and change in telecommunications and cultural companies and financial institutions, as well as the establishment of and change in any form of commercial presence other than company.

The decision noted that in order to further liberalise the service industry to Hong Kong and Macau service providers, the mainland will temporarily adjust some of the required administrative approval items as well as preferential market access measures, such as qualifications, equity ratio limits and restrictions on scope of business.

The mainland will temporarily adjust the relevant administrative approval items and preferential market access measures for service providers from Hong Kong and Macau and allow them to provide on the mainland telecommunications services prescribed in the Agreements. The specific administrative measures will be drawn up by the department in charge of industry and information technology under the State Council.

Content provided by Picture: HKTDC Research
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