Scholars' views

Free Minds and Work Together as a Reform and Opening-up Pioneer in New Era

General Secretary Xi Jinping pointed out that reform and opening up was a crucial move in making China what it is today, and it is also a crucial move in achieving “Two Centenary Goals” and realizing the rejuvenation of the Chinese nation. It was proposed at the 11th Party Congress of Tianjin that Tianjin in modern times must be a pacesetter and a metropolis with arms open wider towards the outside world. Becoming a pilot zone for economic reform must be put on the top priority of Tianjin’s developing orientation, and the city must act quickly and bravely to take the lead in the undertaking of reform and opening-up. Over the past five years, the Tianjin Municipal Party Committee and Tianjin Municipal Government have freed their minds and focused on working inside and outside forces, and not only made breakthroughs in the reform and innovation of key areas and processes, but also yielded a number of fruits that can be popularized and replicated nationwide. They have gained valuable experience for all-round deeper reform and opening-up of socialism with Chinese characteristics in the new era.

Invigorate the economy through reform and promote the construction of a new modern market economy system in a down-to-earth manner

Socialism with Chinese characteristics has ushered in a new age. The accumulating structural and institutional contradictions of the economy have resulted in prominent problems of unbalanced, uncoordinated and unsustainable development. Therefore, we must ground our efforts in the new development stage, follow the new development philosophy, foster a new development paradigm, avoid undue emphasis on the rate and scale of growth, propel transformative changes in the quality, efficiency, and impetus of economic development, and strive to achieve high-quality development. According to the new requirements for and characteristics of high-quality development, we should constantly promote the deep-seated systemic and institutional reform and innovation, and adjust elements in production relations incompatible with the development of productive forces, in order to unleash and develop the productive forces. Reform in the economic system is still the focus of comprehensively deepening reform. The underlying issue we face in economic structural reform is still how to strike a balance between the role of the government and that of the market, or, to promote the construction of a new modern market economy system. The new system of modern market economy is a high-standard market system based on the basic socialist economic system, including entry, exit and competition, which is characterized by efficient allocation of resources and effective incentives for innovation. The former requires resources are priced by the market, circulate freely and orderly and are allocated in an efficient and fair manner. The latter characteristic, on the one hand, focuses on improving the fair competition system, strengthening and improving anti-monopoly and anti-unfair competition law enforcement, and on the other hand, improving the property rights protection system and encouraging enterprises to make independent innovation. Therefore, Tianjin has embarked on a self-revolution by starting with a transformation of government functions, delineating the boundary of government functions through the one system, three upgrades, and has improved the administrative efficiency. Twenty-six measures were introduced to support the reform and development of private enterprises, and 36 actions were launched to further create a market-oriented, legal and international business environment. China (Tianjin) Intellectual Property Protection Center has been built, and the comprehensive credit of Tianjin ranks among the best in the country. In the national business environment assessment of 2020, Tianjin held 12 indicators as the national benchmark, and the government service and cross-border trade ranked among the top five in China.

Expand potentials through opening-up to actively develop new systems for a higher-standard open economy

Today's world is experiencing change on a scale unseen in a century, the international patterns and systems are undergoing profound adjustments, the global governance system is undergoing momentous changes, and the balance in global power configuration is undergoing the most revolutionary changes since modern times. The current opening-up has changed from market-oriented opening-up to institutional opening-up. The former emphasizes the liberalization of border measures, including tariff reduction, market access, and national treatment, while the latter focuses on the integration of measures and regulations within the border, or uniform standards, competition and supervision. This requires that internal reform and opening-up must go hand-in-hand. Accelerating the implementation of the free trade zone strategy is precisely adaptable to the new trend of economic globalization, the inevitable choice for comprehensively deepening reform and building a new open economic system, and also an important means for China's economy to develop foreign relations and achieve its strategic objectives of foreign affairs. This type of opening-up is designed not only to promote trade and investment and help Chinese enterprises explore the international market, but also to serve as an important platform for China to actively participate in the formulation of international economic and trade rules and strive for the institutional power in global economic governance. Against this background, China (Tianjin) Pilot Free Trade Zone was established in 2015, with the ambitious goal of becoming a high-level opening-up platform for the coordinated development of the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region, a national reform and opening-up pilot area and an experimental field for institutional innovation, and a high-level free trade park facing the world. The Zone takes institutional innovation as the core task, and its successful experience will be hopefully replicated and popularized nationwide. Through continuous exploration and practice, this experiment field has harvested fruitful results. A total of 37 pilot experiences and practice cases have been replicated and introduced throughout the country, accounting for 19.9% of the total number in the country.