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China policy round-up: Vice premier promises easier foreign investment access, Canadian judge yet to rule on extradition of Huawei’s Meng

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By Addison Gong, Rebecca Feng
24 Jan 2020

In this round-up, Chinese vice premier Han Zheng said China will further remove barriers of entry for foreign investment and lower its tariffs and Huawei’s chief financial officer Meng Wanzhou is still waiting for a ruling on her extradition to the United States.

Vice premier Han Zheng said China will work to allow for easier market access for foreign investors and shorten the country’s negative list, which rules out certain industries. The government will also permit wholly foreign-owned enterprises to operate in more areas, he said.

Speaking at the World Economic Forum in Davos on Tuesday, Han also vowed for the country to further lower import tariffs, according to an article published on the State Council’s website from the Xinhua News Agency.

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Sonny Perdue, the US agriculture secretary, said at the American Farm Bureau Federation’s annual convention on Monday that there was no need for a third year of trade-related aid for farmers. This is thanks to China’s promise to increase purchases of US agricultural goods as part of the phase-one trade deal, Perdue said.

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The extradition hearing of Huawei’s chief financial officer Meng Wanzhou got underway on Monday in Vancouver. Meng was accused of “double criminality” – meaning that the accused person has committed a crime that constitutes an offence both to Canada and the requesting country. If the accusation stands, Canada will have the legal grounds to extradite her to the US.

The four-day hearing wrapped up on Thursday, but presiding judge Heather Holmes did not make an immediate ruling, saying she was “reserving judgement”. More hearings are scheduled for later this year.

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China Investment Corp, the country’s sovereign wealth fund, has named a new chairman of its supervisory board, local media outlet Caixin reported. The position has been vacant for two months.

Hu Hao, previously a senior executive vice president of the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, will join the sovereign wealth fund, subject to regulatory approval. 

By Addison Gong, Rebecca Feng
24 Jan 2020