Caixin
Sep 02, 2021 07:26 PM
ECONOMY

Hainan Plans International Carbon Market as Part of Free Trade Port Strategy

The scenery of Haikou, South China’s Hainan province, on Wednesday. Photo: VCG
The scenery of Haikou, South China’s Hainan province, on Wednesday. Photo: VCG

Hainan province will promote the establishment of an international carbon trading exchange and try to attract more listed companies to set up shop on the tropical island, according to a plan on using finance to support its goal of becoming a free trade port.

The plan (link in Chinese), released on Wednesday, fleshes out how Hainan will act on a list of recommendations (link in Chinese) issued earlier this year on the same subject by central financial authorities.

The implementation plan is the latest step in Beijing’s grand vision of transforming the southern island into a world-class free trade port.

The new document lays out 89 measures in various fields, including improving the convertibility of the yuan, supporting cross-border trade and investment, and improving Hainan’s financial market.

Hainan will ramp up support for green finance and for setting up an international carbon trading venue to connect the international and domestic markets, the plan says.

In addition, the plan says that industry and government players should work together to help companies get listed, especially those in tourism, modern services industries, high-tech sectors, and tropical agriculture. The plan also calls for attracting high-quality companies that are either already listed or planning IPOs to relocate to Hainan, where policy and supply chain support will be provided.

As of July, Hainan was home to 34 companies (link in Chinese) listed on the Chinese mainland, according to government data.

The island has already unveiled measures to attract international service providers and launched preferential tax policies, though it warned it would not let itself become a tax haven.

The plan also encourages companies to use the yuan for cross-border trade and promises simplified procedures for foreign investments.

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In April 2018, Chinese President Xi Jinping announced that the country would build Hainan into a free trade port. Last year, top policymakers released a master plan (link in Chinese) covering tax breaks and relaxed regulation that aims to make Hainan an “internationally influential, high-level” free trade port by 2050.

Contact reporter Zhang Yukun (yukunzhang@caixin.com) and editor Joshua Dummer (joshuadummer@caixin.com)

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