Zhejiang's commercial development
Zhejiang's commerce departments at all levels have been pressing ahead with supply-side structural reforms, spearheading the Belt and Road Initiative and a new round of opening-up, to maintain growth momentum and benefit Zhejiang's people. Many annual events, such as the Zhejiang Investment and Trade Symposium, the West Lake Expo, the China Yiwu International Commodities Fair, and the Zhejiang Commercial Service Fair, are vital platforms for Zhejiang's engagement with the global economy.
The foreign trade volume of East China's Zhejiang province rose by 5.7 percent year on year to 1.41 trillion yuan ($205.1 billion) in the first half of 2019. Zhejiang's exports totaled 1.05 trillion yuan, up by 6.6 percent year on year while imports totaled 360.52 billion yuan, up by 3.3 percent. Statistics show that the province's foreign trade with countries along the Belt and Road maintains sustained and rapid growth. Zhejiang has made remarkable achievements in market development with those countries, especially newly emerging markets. The province's foreign trade with ASEAN, Latin America and Africa amounted to 166.71 billion yuan, 130.02 billion yuan and 103.94 billion yuan, up by 12.5 percent, 10.1 percent and 8.9 percent respectively, accounting for 28.4 percent of the province's total foreign trade volume in the first six months. Zhejiang has also optimized and developed its export commodity structure. High-tech product exports reached 73.7 billion yuan, an increase of 11.8 percent year on year.
Zhejiang has been making efforts to facilitate foreign investment for better use of foreign capital. The department of commerce in Zhejiang province said the area has become a popular destination for foreign investors and the growth of its foreign direct investment outpaced that of other coastal provinces in the first six months of the year. Its total FDI reached $6.95 billion, up by 4.8 percent year-on-year, 1.3 percent higher than the national average. The FDI accounted for 9.8 percent of the total FDI nationwide. Investment from Europe, the United States and Japan has maintained sustainable growth. Investment from Europe and the US saw yearly growth of 100.3 percent and 109.4 respectively during the first half of the year. And 10 Fortune 500 companies entered Zhejiang during the period, bringing in investment in high-tech industries.