The Chinese Ministry of Commerce and the local government agreed yesterday to introduce 19 measures to foster economic and trade ties between the mainland and Macau.
The new measures were announced after the first meeting of the “Commission on Economic and Trade Cooperation between mainland and Macau.” The meeting, held at the Government Headquarters, was co-chaired by the Chinese Vice Minister of Commerce, Fu Ziying, and the Secretary for Economy and Finance, Lionel Leong.
Following the meeting, the two officials signed a new document under the framework of the “Mainland and Macau Closer Economic Partnership Arrangement” (CEPA).
During today’s meeting, Fu – who is also designated China International Trade Representative – discussed a series of measures to enhance economic cooperation in both directions, including further measures to promote liberalization of trade in services within the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macau Greater Bay Area, as well as support for Macau to continue taking part in the China International Import Expo.
Secretary Leong said he believed the Commission would help propel the city’s economic diversification effort, and help advance Macau’s position as a commercial and trade cooperation service platform between China and Portuguese- speaking countries.
The CEPA update aims to create a more comprehensive regulatory framework to encourage movement of goods between the two places. Highlights of the new agreement include a chapter dedicated to measures for facilitating trade in goods within the Greater Bay Area, and to enhance movement of goods under joint inspection protocols between different customs authorities.
CEPA was initiated in 2004, with the aims of promoting the mutual economic prosperity and development of the mainland and the MSAR, and of enhancing the level of economic and trade cooperation between the two governments. It covers three economic and trade areas, namely Trade in Goods, Trade in Services, and Trade and Investment Facilitation.
According to official data, as of November 30, the Macao Economic Services had issued 5,418 CEPA certificates of origin, of which 4,793 had been exercised, involving products with a total export value of approximately MOP940 million, generating an estimated saving – in what would otherwise have been cross- boundary tariffs – amounting to some MOP66.5 million.
Goods covered by the certificates include cement, textiles and clothing, yarn, plastic bags, recordable compact discs, printing ink, food and beverage products (confectionery, biscuits, nuts, coffee beans, coffee powder and distilled water for human consumption), refined copper foil, electrical conductors, chemicals (thinners, glue, salt of tetracyclines), postage materials, ribbons for typewriters, footwear, crude glycerol, recycled plastics, cosmetic products, other industrial materials, monocarboxylic fatty acids and fibreglass cloth.