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Jiangxi accelerates development of open economy

By ​Zhao Ruinan Source: China Daily Updated: 2024-05-20


Workers weld magnetic separation equipment for export to Africa at the factory of the Slon Magnetic Separator Co Ltd in Ganzhou, Jiangxi province, on Jan 23, 2024. [Photo/VCG]

Jiangxi province is accelerating the development of an open economy by actively promoting high-quality "bringing in" and high-level "going out" initiatives, senior provincial officials said on Thursday.

Last year, Jiangxi's foreign trade reached 569 billion yuan ($78.9 billion). Official data show that exports of the "new three" products — new energy vehicles, photovoltaic products and lithium batteries — increased by 73 percent, accounting for 4.3 percent of the national export volume and ranking sixth nationwide.

One of the engines that promotes the "new three" industries is Jiangxi's abundant lithium resources. Data from the Ministry of Natural Resources show that the city of Yichun has lithium oxide reserves exceeding 9 million metric tons, and over 20 lithium mica mines, including the largest in Asia, which account for 40 percent of the national reserves.

"Jiangxi's development is open and inclusive. Over the past four years, Jiangxi has actively promoted the construction of an inland open economy pilot zone with high standards, accelerating the establishment of a comprehensive new open pattern," Ye Jianchun, deputy secretary of the Communist Party of China Jiangxi Provincial Committee, said at a news conference held by the State Council Information Office in Beijing.

In April 2020, the State Council approved the establishment of an open economy pilot zone in Jiangxi.

Ye, also governor of the province, said that Jiangxi has implemented a more efficient customs clearance model, reducing transport times from Jiangxi to coastal ports from an average of 70 hours to less than 30.

He added that Jiangxi's export clearance efficiency now ranks fifth in the country.

Jiangxi is also promoting the development of cross-border e-commerce. The province's total cross-border e-commerce import and export volume reached 463 billion yuan last year, ranking sixth nationwide.

"Jiangxi is also actively integrating into the Belt and Road Initiative. Next, we will focus on accelerating reform and opening-up and injecting vigorous momentum into the development of Jiangxi," Ye said.

Riding on a more open development strategy, Jiangxi's GDP increased from 1.28 trillion yuan in 2012 to 3.22 trillion yuan in 2023. Per capita GDP rose from 28,600 yuan to 71,200 yuan during the same period.

Song Dexiong, head of the province's Science and Technology Department, said Jiangxi is also ramping up efforts to drive technological innovation, achieving breakthroughs in sectors like large civilian helicopters and semiconductor light-emitting devices.

Song said that over the past three years, Jiangxi has implemented six major actions to promote science and technology, leading to a positive trend in technological innovation.

The growth of technology-based small and medium-sized enterprises has surged by 73.8 percent, and technology contract transactions have nearly tripled, Song said.

While accelerating high-quality development, Jiangxi is also coordinating efforts to ensure the wellbeing of its people.

Ren Zhufeng, a member of the Standing Committee of the CPC Jiangxi Provincial Committee and executive vice-governor of the province, emphasized that ensuring people's livelihoods remains a top priority.

Since the 18th CPC National Congress in 2012, over 5 trillion yuan has been spent to promote employment, income growth and prosperity for ordinary people, Ren said, adding that more than 220 billion yuan in entrepreneurial guarantee loans have been disbursed, ranking first nationwide.

He said that last year, Jiangxi provided free HPV vaccinations for 487,000 eligible girls and established over 1,000 childcare institutions.

"This year, we have introduced services for caring for disabled individuals and developed elderly meal assistance services," he said. "Through these small but significant improvements in livelihood, we aim to ensure the people benefit."