The State Council Issued the General Scheme for China (Liaoning, Zhejiang, Henan, Hubei, Chongqing, Sichuan, Shaanxi) Pilot Free Trade Zones
On 31 March 2017, the State Council separately issued the General Scheme for China (Liaoning) Pilot Free Trade Zone, the General Scheme for China (Zhejiang) Pilot Free Trade Zone, the General Scheme for China (Henan) Pilot Free Trade Zone, the General Scheme for China (Hubei) Pilot Free Trade Zone, the General Scheme for China (Chongqing) Pilot Free Trade Zone, the General Scheme for China (Sichuan) Pilot Free Trade Zone, the General Scheme for China (Shaanxi) Pilot Free Trade Zone (collectively referred to as “the General Scheme”). The General Scheme points out that the establishment of Liaoning, Zhejiang, Henan, Hubei, Chongqing, Sichuan, Shaanxi Pilot Free Trade Zones is a momentous decision made by the Party Central Committee and State Council and is also a strategic measure under the new situation of comprehensively deepened reform and expanded opening-up, which has significant influences over accelerating the transformation of government functions, exploring the innovation of management mode, promoting trade investment facilitation, deepening financial openness and innovation, thereby exploring new methods and accumulating new experiences for comprehensively deepened reform and expanded opening-up.
The General Administration of Customs (“GAC”) and the Office of Administration of the Imports and Exports of Endangered Species of the People’s Republic of China Jointly Issued the Announcement of Implementing the Pilot Project on the Networking and Paperless Customs Clearance of the Certificate of Imports and Exports of Endangered Wildlife in Harbin, Fuzhou, Xiamen and Kunming (Announcement  No.15)
In order to strengthen the imports and exports management of wildlife and its related products, guarantee the rational utilisation of wildlife resources and sustainable development of related industries, and improve trade facilitation level, the GAC and the Office of Administration of the Imports and Exports of Endangered Species of the People’s Republic of China has decided to implement the pilot project on the networking and paperless customs clearance of the certificate of imports and exports of endangered wildlife in Harbin, Fuzhou, Xiamen and Kunming.
The GAC Issued the Announcement for Promulgating Annotations (Adjusted and Abolished in 2017) on Domestic Sub-items of Customs Import and Export Tariff of the People's Republic of China (The GAC Announcement  No.16)
To facilitate the consignees and consignors of import and export goods as well as their agents to accurately make declaration of commodity classification, the GAC has adjusted and abolished part of the Annotations on Domestic Sub-items of Customs Import and Export Tariff of the People's Republic of China in accordance with the Customs Import and Export Tariff of the People's Republic of China for 2017. The adjusted 14 sub-items include: Chinese mitten crab (Tariff No.: 0306.3391), cuttlefish & squid for cultivation (Tariff No.: 0307.4210); the abolished 8 sub-items include: high viscosity slices (Tariff No.: 3907.6011), white pine (spruce and fir) (Tariff No.: 4403.2020), etc. have been abolished. This Announcement shall be effective from 1 May 2017.
The GAC Issued the Announcement for Promulgating and Abolishing the Decisions on Certain Commodity Classification (The GAC Announcement  No.17)
To facilitate the consignees and consignors of import and export goods, business units as well as their agents to correctly make declarations, minimise disputes relating to commodity classification and ensure unified enforcement of customs commodity classification, pursuant to Rules of the General Administration of Customs of the People's Republic of China on the Commodity Classification of Import and Export Goods (GAC Decree No.158), the GAC decides to announce the Decision on Commodity Classification for 2017 (I), including the classification decision on WuLing V1 sightseeing car (Tariff No.: 87.02/87.03). Should any changes occur in terms of laws, administrative regulations and other relevant stipulations by which the decision on commodity classification is formulated, this decision shall cease to be effective accordingly. The above decision shall come into effective from 1 May 2017. Meanwhile, other invalid commodity classification decisions due to the changes of laws and administrative regulations shall be disclosed as well, including 8 commodity classification decisions, such as LED lights and glazed ceramic tile for external wall of buildings, etc.
China and Norway Reached Consensus on Restarting Relevant Trade and Economic Arrangements
During 7-10 April 2017, Erna Solberg, Prime Minister of Norway, was invited to pay an official visit to China. Witnessed by the two government leaders of Norway and China, Fu Ziying, China International Trade Representative and Vice Minister of the Ministry of Commerce of the People's Republic of China (“MOFCOM”), signed the Memorandum of Understanding of Recovering the Free Trade Agreement Negotiation between the MOFCOM and the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Fishery of the Kingdom of the Norway, Memorandum of Understanding of Recovering the Joint Economic and Trade Committee between the MOFCOM and the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Fishery of the Kingdom of the Norway with Mellan, and signed the Memorandum of Understanding of Economic and Technical Cooperation between the Government of the People's Republic of China and the Government of the Kingdom of the Norway with Blender, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Norway. The economies of China and Norway are highly complementary to each other with profound cooperation basis. Restarting relevant trade and economic arrangements contributes to the deepening of mutual cooperation between the two countries and promotes the China-Norway trade and economic relationship to a new level.
General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine (“AQSIQ”) Issued the Notice on the Quarantine Requirements of Exporting Bananas to New Zealand and Importing Citruses from Italy
Based on the results of risk analysis, the AQSIQ signed the Plan for Exporting bananas in China to New Zealand and Protocol on the Quarantine Requirements for Importing Citruses from Italy with the quarantine departments of New Zealand and Italy respectively. From 7 April 2017 onward, the bananas in China that meet relevant requirements are permitted to be exported to New Zealand and Citruses from Italy that meet relevant requirements are permitted to be exported to China.
The GAC Issued the Announcement for the Implementation of Anti-dumping Measures on Vinylidene Chloride-Vinyl Chloride Copolymer Resin Related Commodities Classification (Announcement  No.18)
Pursuant to Anti-dumping Regulations of the People's Republic of China, the MOFCOM has decided to impose anti-dumping duties on vinylidene chloride-vinyl chloride copolymer resin (Tariff No.: 3904.5000) imported from Japan from 20 April 2017 onward, with a period of 5 years. The MOFCOM issued the Announcement and clarified the specific scope of commodities which are subject to anti-dumping duties. From 20 April 2017 onward, when the consignees of imported goods make import declaration for the commodities fallen into such specific anti-dumping scope under abovementioned Tariff No., the declared HS code should be 39045000.10.
The GAC Issued the Announcement for Exempting Submission of Paper-based Certificate of Levying or Exemption on Import and Export Goods of the Customs of the People's Republic of China (Announcement  No.19)
To further facilitate the customs clearance process and tax reduction/exemption application, the GAC has decided that from 26 April 2017 onward, consignors/consignees or their authorised brokers, which have completed relevant tax reduction/exemption application formalities via the tax reduction/exemption application system of China e-port QP pre-input client link and been approved by the Customs, shall be exempted from submitting the second copy of paper-based Certificate Tax Levying or Exemption on Import and Export Goods of the Customs of the People's Republic of China (i.e. the form to be submitted to the Customs for tax reduction/exemption) during the import clearance process.
The GAC, the State Administration of Taxation (“SAT”) and the State Administration of Foreign Exchange (“SAFE”) Jointly Signed the Framework Agreement on the Implementation of Information Sharing and Consolidated Supervision Mechanism and the Memorandum Regarding the Promotion of Information Sharing and Consolidated Supervision
The GAC, the SAT and the SAFE jointly signed the Framework Agreement on the implementation of Information Sharing and Consolidated Supervision Mechanism (“the Framework Agreement”). The GAC signed the Memorandum regarding the Promotion of Information Sharing and Consolidated Supervision with the SAT and the SAFE respectively, to practically implement the Framework Agreement. According to the Framework Agreement, the three parties reached consensus on accelerating inter-departmental information sharing, supervision recognition and enforcement assistance, to constantly improve supervision during and after the process, improve management efficiency, reduce management costs, better prevent and crack down criminal activities such as smuggling, deception of export tax refunds and foreign exchange, and guarantee effective execution of the policies of customs, taxation and foreign exchange.