domestically rated “AAA”, the safest level. The sale to individual investors is mainly of project-link
ed special-purpose bonds, a type of local government bond vigorously promoted by the government in re
cent years. The cash flows generated from the underlying projects will be used as the primary repayment sources.
In China, there are two types of local government bonds: general bonds and special purpose bonds. According to the country’s 2019 budget repor
t, which was approved by the top legislature earlier this month, the budgeted deficit for local governments is 930 billion yuan, up 100 billi
on yuan compared with 2018, and this fund gap will be supplemented by general bonds.
In the meantime, 2.15 trillion yuan of special purpose bonds will be issued to support la
rge infrastructure projects, such as shantytown renovation projects and railways, said the ministry.
Letting individual buyers invest in local government bonds is a way to narrow the government’s financin
g gap, said Hu Yijian, a tax professor at Shanghai University of Finance and Economics. The gap is expected to expand, as policym
akers decided to cut about 2 trillion yuan in taxes and fees this year while at the same time increase spending on investment.
ith so many applications in different parts of industry and the economy, and we want agreements, project by project.”
Raffarin was appointed special envoy on China affairs by French President Emmanuel Mac
ron. He pointed out that it is not pragmatic to have an agreement about every industrial sector, because, as sovereig
n states, both countries need to protect the interests of their own businesses and industries.
“It’s easier to go project by project, and, after some experience, we can add a larger vision,” Raffarin said.
His comments came after Italy signed a BRI memorandum of understanding with China during
Xi’s visit to Rome last week to become the first G7 country to join the global infrastructure plan.
According to China’s Ministry of Commerce, from January to November 2018, China’s direct investment in France reached $330 mil
lion. China’s growing investment in Europe has prompted concerns in the West, which Raffarin thinks are misplaced.
video platforms such as Kuaishou, Bilibili, Douyin and Huoshan, to obtain more data flows and encourage brands and buyers to do more live broadcasts,” Zeng said.
It also plans to tap into the social e-commerce sector, which is currently in its testing phase.
Experts say the livestreaming explosion is boosting China’s e-commerce sector. The new
format could display the commodities in more dimensions and increase users’ trust.
Cao Lei, director of China E-Commerce Research Center, said this method could attract consume
rs’ attention quickly and accurately as most of the livestreaming users are post-90s generation who are accusto
med to shopping online, as well as help online retailers to gain data flows and create a “real” shopping scenario.
“Immediate feedbacks could be given to merchants based on users’ instructions. Through their
mobile phones, consumers are able to talk with overseas buyers, which will greatly enhance users’ trust on the platform.”
China’s cross-border e-commerce sector has been growing rapid
ly over the past few years, owing to a rapid growth in the nation’s middle and high-income shoppers.
France cooperation has not changed, Xi said.
“The history of China-France cooperation shows that bilateral ties are not ‘a zero-sum game.’ The strong com
plementarities between the two economies will remain for a long time,” Xi said, adding that China’s sustained devel
opment and further opening-up will create a host of new opportunities as well as broader space for bilateral cooperation.
Xi called on the two countries to constantly explore new fields of cooperation, nurture new growth areas for cooper
ation, and speed up the implementation of the Belt and Road and third-party cooperation projects that have been agreed upon.
“China staands ready to strengthen strategic communication and coordination with France on major issues including the UN aff
airs, the reform of the World Trade Organization and climate change,” Xi said, adding that China always supports European inte
gration and hopes France can play a more active role in leading and promoting China-Europe relations.
Hailing his successful visit to China last year, Macron said that the two countries have been implementing the important con
sensus reached by him and Xi over the past year, strengthening cooperation on economy, trade, technology and culture.