On February 3 the General Administration of Customs of the PRC announced that, in 2008, the total value of imports and exports for the special customs supervision zones reached 299.4 billion USD, an increase of 16.89 percent year-on-year, accounting for 28.42 percent of the nation-wide value of processing trade.
Of that, total exports for the zones reached 152.6 billion USD, up by 21.74 percent year-on-year, while total imports reached 147 billion USD, up by 12.23 percent year-on-year.
Special customs supervision zones are free trade zones offering preferential policy and convenient, fast procedures for customs clearance. Shanghai Waigaoqiao Free Trade Zone, the first of such kind in China, was established in 1990. More zones with different functions, such as export processing zones, tariff-free logistics parks and tariff-free port area were built later. At present, there are 94 special customs supervision zones in China.
A nationwide restructuring is currently underway for such zones in China. After that, these zones will include the functions of tariff-free processing and tariff-free logistics, in conjunction with supplementary functions such as related research and development, detection, maintenance as well as functions such as trade in and services.
By People's Daily Online