A Detailed Introduction to the China-ROK International Cooperation Demonstration Zone

Updated : 2020-05-18Source : CCFAO
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The China-ROK (Changchun) International Cooperation Demonstration Zone, which was approved by the State Council, is an important deployment of the CPC Central Committee and the State Council to promote the all-round, comprehensive revitalization and high-quality development of Northeast China. In face of the great challenges caused by the novel coronavirus pneumonia (COVID-19) in particular, it is an important initiative for expanding opening up, strengthening China-ROK cooperation and revitalizing economy, which in turn will no doubt add a new power to the all-round, comprehensive revitalization of Northeast China. The overall plan of the demonstration zone has been approved by the State Council. According to the deployment by the CPC Central Committee and the State Council, all involved shall follow the overall plan, adhere to the new development concept, insist on the high-quality development and take building the demonstration zone as an opportunity to establish a modern industrial system, improve the core competitiveness of the city, thereby promoting the high-quality economic development of Changchun City.  


1. Development Foundation

Obvious Location Advantage—The demonstration area is in Changchun, a city which is situated in the geographical center of Northeast Asia, connecting with ROK, Japan and DPRK in the east and Russia and Mongolia in the west. It is 700 kilometers away from Seoul, Capital of ROK. Through Hunchun of Jilin Province, Changchun is able to reach out to the ports along the Sea of Japan, and through Dandong of Liaoning Province to the main cities on the east and west coasts of ROK. As an important node for the regional cooperation and development of China-Mongolia-Russia Economic Corridor and Tumen River Cooperation and Development, Changchun is also an important region for cooperation among the countries in Northeast Asia.

Solid Industrial Foundation—Changchun has established a modern industrial system dominated by three pillar industries of automobile, agricultural processing and rail transit, and supported by such strategic, emerging industries as advanced equipment manufacturing, biomedicine, optoelectronic information, new materials and big data, which plays an important role in promoting the all-round, comprehensive revitalization of Northeast China.

Close Cooperation and Exchanges—ROK is the largest source of foreign investment and the largest market of inbound tourists of Jilin Province. Changchun has established friendly and cooperative relations with six counterparts of ROK including Ulsan, Incheon and Jeonju. By the end of 2019, the number of foreign-funded enterprises from ROK in Jilin Province had exceeded 400 nearly 100 of which are in Changchun City. The industrial chains, supply chains and value chains of the two sides are highly complementary to each other, which in turn will generate great potential for cooperation.

To speed up the construction of the demonstration zone is conducive to expanding China-ROK economic cooperation to innovation and park-based cooperation, building a new cooperation platform at a higher level and in a broader field between the two countries, promoting the flow and optimization of allocation of key factors in a wider range and a wider field so as to play a positive role in promoting the all-round, comprehensive revitalization of Northeast China, and exploring a new pattern for regional economic cooperation in Northeast Asia.


2. General Requirements

Guiding Ideology—Guided by Xi Jinping’s Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics, all involved in the construction of the demonstration zone shall implement the spirit of the 19th National People’s Congress and the 2nd, 3rd and 4th Plenary Sessions of the 19th CPC Central Committee, promote the “five-in-one” layout, promote in a coordinated way the “Four-pronged Strategy”, adhere to the concept of new development and high-quality development in accordance with the decision and deployment made by the CPC Central Committee and the State Council, strive to build up a new pattern of opening up and cooperation in various fields including industry, science, technology, trade, humanity and environmental protection, attach importance to the innovation in the system of cooperation with foreign countries, focus on building a modern industrial system, and create a demonstration zone highlighting a legal, convenient business environment with more efficient, coordinated management and services.

Basic Principles:

Led by Reform, Driven by Innovation—All involved in the construction of the demonstration zone shall insist on innovation-oriented reform, promote pilot schemes in key fields and procedures, create a sound business and policy environment, and promote the high-quality development of the demonstration zone by means of innovation in concept, management, technology and mode.

Opening up, Cooperation, Mutual Benefits, Win-win Results—The priority shall be given to adhering to the principle of promoting reform, innovation and cooperation through opening up, bringing into full play the comparative advantages of all parties, deepen in an-around way the pragmatic cooperation between Changchun City, Jilin Province and ROK in the key industrial fields to achieve win-win results in the joint construction of the demonstration zone.

Supported by Government, Dominated by Market—The governments of the two sides shall work more to support the economic and technological cooperation with high-level infrastructure construction, improve the public service capacity of the demonstration zone, give full play to the role of enterprises as the main body, and attract all sectors of society and various market entities to participate in the construction of the demonstration zone.

Planed as a Whole, Key Points Highlighted—The plans of all kinds for the demonstration zone shall be made in a scientific manner, the “three lines and one list” for the management and control of environment in different sections be implemented, and the key tasks in different terms, near, middle to far be set reasonably. Focusing on the key industries, fields and procedures, a batch of early harvest results shall made in the promotion of the construction of the demonstration zone.

Strategic Positioning:

New Engine for Revitalization and Development of Jilin Province and even Northeast China—The economic cooperation with such countries as ROK plays a demonstration role in deepening the supply-side structural reform and in leading the all-round, comprehensive revitalization of Northeast China.

Leading Zone for Regional Economic Cooperation in Northeast Asia—The demonstration zone is to promote the effective connection of the Belt and Road Initiative with the development strategies of neighboring countries, and to lead and drive the opening up of Jilin Province and the region of Northeast China while promoting the multilateral cooperation among the countries in Northeast Asia by means of bilateral cooperation between China and ROK.

Pilot Zone for All-round, Wide-range Cooperation between China and ROK—The cooperation between China and ROK in such fields as trade, investment, service, industry, science, technology, education, culture and sport shall be deeply carried out and relevant provisions of the China-ROK Free Trade Agreement be implemented to cultivate new momentum for economic cooperation in new fields between China and ROK

Development Goals—By 2025, the economic cooperation and exchanges between the demonstration zone and ROK and other countries will be promoted in an all-round way, the business environment in line with the international first-class level will be further optimized, the carrying capacity of infrastructure will be significantly improved, foreign direct investment will continue to grow, the core competitiveness of characteristic industries will be significantly enhanced, and an international opening up and cooperation platform featuring high-quality development will be initially established. By 2035, the aggregative function of top-end factors and industries of the demonstration zone will be significantly enhanced, and remarkable achievements will be made in the economic cooperation with ROK and in the economic exchanges with other countries. The level of industrial development, all-round opening up, green development and urban-rural coordinated development will be improved, thereby becoming a highly competitive and influential international cooperation demonstration zone in Northeast Asia.

Spatial Layout—The demonstration zone is in the northeast of Changchun City, with a development area of about 36 square kilometers at the moment and of approximately 210 square kilometers in a long term. The range of each and every of the four different boundaries is determined according to the legal procedures of state-owned land and space planning. The demonstration zone will be constructed in accordance with the principle of overall planning and implementation in different phases for a spatial pattern of “one core, two wings and several parks”.

“One Core”: With the region between the Ecological Corridor of Ganwuhai River and the Ecological Corridor of Wukai River as the core, such industries as R&D, film and television culture, animation, game, medical care and skin care will be congregated in such a core area for the development of top-end services inside the demonstration zone.

“Two Wings”: Relying on the Changchun International Land Port, efforts will be put into building a “western land port” for a top-end manufacturing cluster, and on the Changchun Longjia International Airport, creating an “eastern airport” for an airport economy cluster.

“Several Parks”: Several professional industrial parks featuring intensive development for new energy vehicle, intelligent connected vehicle, information technology, equipment manufacturing, medicine, medical care, health food, film and television, animation, aviation logistics and manufacturing will be constructed along with supporting a function area for international businesses. Relying on the Changchun Xinglong Comprehensive Bonded Area, such new businesses as cross-border e-commerce will be supported.


3. Key Tasks

Promoting Coordination and Cooperation of Industrial Chains

Information Technology—Efforts will be put into strengthening cooperative relations with the enterprises of ROK and domestically famous enterprises, supporting cooperation in AI, internet of things, industrial internet, 5G plus VR/4K, software development and other industries, and promoting cooperation in such fields as compound semiconductor, power semiconductor (IGBT, etc.), chip, new display supporting material and smart household appliance.

Top-end Equipment and Intelligent Manufacturing—The focus will be put on promoting international cooperation in such industries as industrial robot, service robot, additive printing, intelligent equipment manufacturing, intelligent control system, intelligent instrument and meter, new energy vehicle and intelligent connected vehicle, energy conservation and environmental protection as well as ice and snow equipment, speeding up the construction of industrial robot manufacturing industrial park, planning to build an intelligent environmental protection equipment industrial park, an intelligent farming equipment, and an ice and snow equipment manufacturing industrial park, and supporting the layout of industries of key parts of new energy vehicles and intelligent connected vehicles in the demonstration zone.

Medical Care and Health Service—Efforts will be made to strengthen international cooperation and exchanges in public health to promote the projects in such fields as medicine, medical device, protective equipment and emergency supply, encourage enterprises and institutions at home and abroad to cooperate in biomedicine, chemical medicine to usher in the production capacities of new antibody drugs, new immunotherapy drugs, new biomedical materials and other products and build the biopharmaceutical contractual processing and outsourcing production base, cooperate to develop northern pharmaceutical industry, promote the construction of the trading center for and build a production base of northern pharmaceuticals, cooperate to build top-end medical care institutions, take health examination, treatment and rehabilitation of chronic and elderly diseases as well as advanced medical technology as the key points to foster new business forms of health presentation, support the demonstration zone, usher in core technologies for clinical diagnosis, rehabilitation, old age care, etc., and build a medical device research and development, test and production base, optimize the quarantine and inspection process for the special testing articles of biomedicines coordinatively developed on a global scale, and carry out international cooperation in the fields of skin care and cosmetology, etc.

Agriculture and Traditional Chinese Medicine—On the basis of organic corn, rice and other food resources as well as pig, beef cattle and other animal husbandry resources, efforts will be made to cooperate to develop table food, leisure food, beverage and other fast-consumption goods. In addition, priority will be given to cooperate with ROK in such fields as ginseng market development, brand building, technology introduction, transformation and utilization, and build platforms for deep processing, product quality testing and electronic trading for ginseng products, and strengthen cooperation with ROK’s famous enterprises to usher in technologies, capital funds and talents to carry out cooperation in health preservation products, traditional Chinese medicines, edible fungi, deer products and seafood, etc.

Cultural Industry—Policy permitting, outstanding cultural and creative enterprises of China and ROK will be encouraged to cooperate in making cultural products and organizing cultural shows. In addition, support will be given to Changchun Film Studio Group and other enterprises to carry out cooperation with their counterparts from ROK to promote the digitalization of radio, film and television, the construction of new media and the integration of industry and education so as to build a film and television base in Northeast China.

Building Opening up and Cooperation Platforms

Improve the Functions of Opening up Platforms—Support will be given to accelerate the construction of international airport and international land port, and build professional, international and service-oriented talent congregation platforms, science and technology innovation platforms, business and trade and financial service platforms, and international exchange platforms. In addition, efforts will be made to secure the success in organizing the Northeast Asia Expo, organize relevant exchange activities for the development of the demonstration zone, promote the economic and trade cooperation and exchanges between China and ROK and among the countries in the region of Northeast Asia, support in accordance with the procedures the establishment of Changchun Airport Economic Demonstration Zone and speed up the development of Changchun Xinglong Comprehensive Bonded Area.

Speed up the Construction of Three-dimensional Land-sea-air Opening up Channels—Relying on the SINOEURO Trains, efforts will be made to promote the connectivity with relevant countries and regions, study to promote the reconstruction and expansion of Changchun Longjia International Airport, open new international routes as required, facilitate the construction of international air transport channels, and speed up the construction of land-sea channels connecting Changchun and the port cities of ROK.

Build a New Green, Eco-friendly City Proper—The industry-city, urban-rural integration will be promoted in addition to optimizing the inside the demonstration zone, and designing and building a new, high-standard city proper featuring people-to-people, cultural characteristics, green ecology and internationalization. In addition, the systems and mechanisms of coordinated planning, construction and management will be established to strengthen urban design and build complete communities and featured townships. The assessment on impacts of river-related construction projects will be reinforced, and the planning and construction of a comprehensive international talent community will be pushed forward to create a world-class healthy life destination.

Strengthening Innovation, People-to-people and Cultural Cooperation

Promote Cooperation in Education, Science and Technology—Efforts will be made to expand cooperation in senior personnel training and among research institutions between China and ROK, support the enterprises of the two countries to jointly build laboratories, technology testing demonstration bases, sci-tech demonstration parks and industrial design service centers, support the famous universities of the two countries to carry out high-level cooperation in schooling in the demonstration zone, explore mutual recognition in such aspects as academic degree and professional qualification, promote the cooperation and exchanges among vocational education institutions and support foreign investment in vocational skill training institutions, promote the in-depth development of entrepreneurship and innovation by the public, promote the construction of China-ROK International Talent Cultivation, Entrepreneurship, Innovation Center, work together to build an education and leisure platform and a new type of think tank with the characteristics of the two countries, organize the youth of the two countries to carry out scientific, cultural and artistic exchanges, and strengthen cooperation in tourism and sport.

Strengthen Multi-level Cooperation among Local Governments, Tourism Associations and Enterprises of China and ROK—Efforts will be made to support the tourism institutions from ROK to set up branches in the demonstration zone, promote the founding of unions of tourism enterprises to develop cross-border travel. Relying on such characteristic resources of nature, culture and tourism as ecological ice and snow, automobile industry and film, priority will be given to the cooperation between the tourism enterprises in the demonstration zone and their famous counterparts in ROK and other countries, cooperate to design and develop tourism products, facilitate the construction of China-ROK International Tourism Distribution Center, attract international tourists to Jilin Province, and support the leisure and sports institutions from ROK to establish regional headquarters in the demonstration zone and carry out cooperation and exchanges in sport and fitness, etc.


4. Policy Measures

Deepen System and Mechanism Reform—The reform to delegate power, streamline administration and optimize government services shall be deepened and the achievements in the reform of “without the need of a second visit” be consolidated. Within the scope of the current laws, regulations and policies, some economic management power at provincial level will be delegated to the demonstration zone to establish a complete system of management on planning, finance, land and other affairs except those need approving from the authorities at national or provincial level. In addition, a list management system will be established to ensure no examination and approval will be executed on the applications not on the list. The management model which is scientific, efficient, independent and flexible will be encouraged, and the management system and incentive mechanism be renovated. In addition, efforts will be made to optimize the system of protection and utilization of intellectual property rights, do a good job in the construction of such “platform chain” systems as finance, consulting, accounting, auditing, standards, and intellectual property, and make use of AI to improve the social governance level of the demonstration zone.

Attract and Utilize Foreign Investment—The all-round implementation of the management system of national treatment plus negative list before the entry of foreign investment in the demonstration zone will be supported and the experience of pilot free trade zones will replicated and popularized to further deepen reform and innovation. In accordance with relevant regulations, the restrictions on the proportion of shares of foreign funds in the manufacturing of commercial vehicles and passenger vehicles will be gradually lifted, and the restrictions on the number of joint ventures not exceeding two will be gradually lifted. In addition, the restrictions on the proportion of shares of foreign funds in securities companies, securities investment fund management companies and futures companies, and those on the proportion of shares of foreign funds in show brokers will be lifted. The wholly foreign-owned travel agencies will be allowed in the demonstration zone to do pilot business in outbound tourism for the mainland residents excluding those from the region of Taiwan.

Promote Trade Facilitation—Efforts will be made to promote in an-round way and accelerate the construction of a “single window” for international trade, have the service trade export tax refund (exemption) declaration included in the “single window” management, streamline the integrated customs clearance process, and reduce to the great extent the time for customs clearance, explore the international mutual recognition mechanism of inspection and quarantine and traceability standards for food and agricultural products, try expanding the scope of third-party results of inspection on acceptable commodities and institutions, optimize the quarantine and inspection process of special experimental products developed by global cooperation in biomedical research and development, and establish a green channel for materials, reagents and imported equipment for new drug research and development. The demonstration zone will be supported to apply for the establishment of ports in accordance with the procedures for the first import of drugs and biological products, and Changchun Longjia International Airport will be supported to expand as required the arrangement of air rights including the fifth air right.

Implement more Convenient Entry-Exit Measures—Efforts will be made to study and implement the 144-hour visa free transit policy, unify the qualification requirements of domestic and foreign-funded talent intermediary institutions and investors, support the demonstration zone in accordance with laws and regulations to carry out the “one card” service for foreign high-caliber talents, promote the socialized application of foreigners’ permanent residence certificates and social security cards, support the economic and trade, scientific and technological personnel in the demonstration zone to apply for one-time examination and approval on multiple exits and entries in a year, optimize in accordance with laws and regulations the entry-exit procedures for foreign high-caliber talents and the entry-exit and residence permit procedures for their families, and support the demonstration zone to explore in the registration for professional qualifications of scientific research experts.

Increase Financial and Tax Support—The construction of the demonstration zone will be supported by the central finance according to the existing policies and funding channels. The financial support of the central budget investment for the construction of the demonstration zone will be increased and included in the scope of support for the construction of key industrial parks and demonstration zones for industrial transformation and upgrading. The annual quota for the use of land for construction for the demonstration zone will be supported and can be listed separately for allocation in the province. The income from land transfer inside the demonstration zone can be used for the construction of the demonstration zone except for agricultural and rural investment in accordance with relevant regulations. The eligible enterprises outside the special customs supervision area within the demonstration zone can carry out bonded “two-ends-extending-abroad” maintenance business of high added value and technology content but in line with environmental protection requirement. The mutual recognition and cooperation of AEO between the customs authorities of China and ROK will be promoted. On the basis of Changchun Cross-border E-commerce Comprehensive Pilot Zone, the demonstration zone will be supported to carry out cross-border e-commerce import-export business, and the pilot policy for cross-border e-commerce retail import shall be well implemented.

Strengthen Financial Cooperation—The establishment of foreign-funded financial institutions in the demonstration zone in accordance with laws and regulations will be supported to provide cross-border financial services including cross-border investment and merger and centralized operation of cross-border funds in accordance with relevant regulations for the enterprises and nonresidents inside the demonstration zone. The funds raised abroad by the enterprises in the demonstration zone, the funds raised abroad by the qualified financial institutions in the demonstration zone and their revenues from providing cross-border services may be independently used in accordance with the provisions for the business and investment activities in the demonstration zone and abroad. In line with the principle of marketization and under the premise of independent decision-making and risk-taking, relevant market entities subjects will be supported to set up as required by laws and regulations the China-ROK Cooperation and Finance Fund in Changchun City. The enterprises and institutions from the two sides will be supported to jointly explore third-party markets by such means as establishing development funds.


5. Organizational Support

Implement Responsibilities—Changchun City and Jilin Province should effectively strengthen the organizational leadership over the construction of the demonstration zone, improve the work coordination mechanism, formulate and issue supporting implementation rules and special policies and measures for the construction of the demonstration zone, make plans for the construction of the demonstration zone, refine and implement the key tasks for the construction of the demonstration zone, and give priority in terms of the arrangement of relevant policies, funds and major projects to the demonstration zone.

Strengthen Organizational Implementation—The competent departments of the State Council shall strengthen in accordance with the divisions of responsibilities and functions the support and guidance for the construction and development of the demonstration zone in such aspects as planning formulation, policy implementation, project layout, institutional innovation and opening up so as to create a good policy environment for the construction of the demonstration zone. The construction of the demonstration zone will be supported to get listed into the high-level exchanges and intergovernmental dialogues between China and ROK, and the cooperation framework of the “Belt and Road Initiative. A coordination mechanism shall be established so as to jointly promote the construction and development of the demonstration zone. The authority of development and reform, together with relevant departments, shall promote the implementation of relevant policies stated in this plan and help coordinate and solve the difficulties and problems in the construction of the demonstration zone. For major issues, however, reports shall be made timely to the State Council.

Demonstration Zone Focuses on Promoting Project Construction—Tower cranes were seen here and there at the industrial innovation center of the China-ROK (Changchun) International Cooperation Demonstration Zone on May 14, showing a busy scene of intensive construction for the projects of phases I and II.

The overall industrial positioning of the industrial innovation center is top-end intelligent equipment, top-end food, medical care and health industry. According to Lu Qi, Deputy General Manager of Changchun Construction Investment (Group) Co., Ltd., four enterprises have settled in the innovation center.

Another key project in the demonstration zone is the Northern Pharmaceutical Industrial Park, which is invested by Yatai Group. It is guided by the planning of the core project of Northeast Asia Medical Care and Health Products Trading Center (Northern Pharmaceutical Trading Center) to create an international, intelligent health industrial park for research, development, incubation and production as well as storage and logistics, digital trading of modern Chinese medicines, biological products, health food and top-end medical devices and experience of conventions and exhibitions and advanced medical (medical cosmology) equipment. Part of the park has now gone operational while the rest is in the stage of construction and investment attraction.

In addition, some new industrial parks for (China-ROK Cooperation) in healthy food, optoelectronics, automobile electronics, international culture, education and technology, international talent communities have been designed for construction inside the demonstration zone.

According to Zhao Xu, Director of the Leading Group Office for the Construction of China-ROK (Changchun) International Cooperation Demonstration Zone, the demonstration zone will make a high-stand planning and especially other stipulated, special plans including spatial planning and regulatory detailed planning on state-owned land for the starting area totaling 36 square kilometers inside the demonstration zone. In terms of promoting international cooperation, IT, top-end equipment and intelligent manufacturing, medical care and health service, agriculture and traditional Chinese medicine, and culture will be focused to promote the coordinated cooperation between China-ROK industrial chains. In such fields as education, science, technology, tourism and sport, innovation and people-to-people and cultural cooperation will be strengthened between the two countries. The construction of opening up and cooperation platforms including Changchun International Airport, international Land Port, Changchun Xinglong Comprehensive Bonded Area and Land-area-air Three-dimensional Channel will be accelerated.

Right after the overall plan was approved, the construction of the demonstration zone was kick-stated in line with the mode of “administrative committee plus company”. In addition, a simplified and efficient management system, an independent and flexible employment mechanism and an incentive mechanism were established for institution organizing while promoting the construction. Inside the demonstration zone, the construction of infrastructure covering main roads, supplies of water, electricity, gas and heating, industrial standard plants is moving forward rapidly. In particular, priority has been given to seizing the opportunity of the construction of new infrastructure including speeding up the layout of 5G base stations, rail transit, charging piles for new energy vehicles and big data centers. The planning and construction of a high-quality international residential community with Chunming Lake as the core and Ganwuhai River as the axis has been put in high gear. In terms of creating a sound business environment, we will make full use of the national support policies to build a more coordinated and efficient international cooperation demonstration zone with legal, international, convenient business and management services.

According to Zhao Xu, the demonstration zone will insist on giving priority to system and mechanism innovation, optimization of development environment, congregation of high-caliber talents, focusing on the construction of “China-ROK Cooperation Platforms”, and kick-staring all construction work as scheduled.