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Harbin trade comes bouncing back in first half in epidemic recovery

Updated : 2021-08-31

By ( e.my399.com )

Business representatives access services at Harbin Bank's settlement service center. CHINA DAILY
The total import and export volume of the Harbin area of the China (Heilongjiang) Pilot Free Trade Zone was 2.75 billion yuan ($424.26 million) in the first half of the year, up 269.8 percent year-on-year, and accounting for 18.07 percent of Harbin's total, data from customs showed.
Of the area's trade from January to June, imports and exports with Russia stood at 294 million yuan, up 153.4 percent year-on-year, which marked a breakthrough in the city's cooperation with Russia.
Since the approval of the Harbin area of the FTZ, the area has made strides in cooperating with Russia in fields such as trade, technology, culture and education and finance.
Dongjin Group, an agricultural conglomerate located in the Harbin area, signed an agreement with Russian authorities to invest in a modern comprehensive agricultural demonstration project at the Khabarovsk border region in 2018.
The project integrates planting, breeding, processing, warehousing, port and logistics, according to the group.
So far, the project has leased 80,000 hectares of land, which is being used for planting 30,000 hectares of crops and building a farm raising more than 3,200 cows.
In 2019, the first shipment of rice produced via the project was transported to China, according to the group.
In terms of scientific cooperation, the Harbin area has introduced high-tech companies to aid in conducting technological cooperation with Ukraine, Russia and other countries. The move has promoted a base for commercializing scientific research results in the area, which has become a collaborative innovation platform between China and Ukraine.
In addition, nine colleges and universities in the Harbin area have cooperated in scientific research with more than 50 higher educational institutions from the Commonwealth of Independent States.
Cultural and educational exchanges have not only helped deepen friendship between Chinese and Russian peoples but also provided the two countries with deeper and broader cooperation, local officials said.
To support financial development, the Harbin area has established a regional financial settlement service center with Russia. To date, the alliance has 72 members incorporating banks, trusts, funds and insurance.
In early 2021, Harbin Bank, a member of the alliance, was certificated to take part in the Cross-border Interbank Payment System.
So far, there have been more than 20 banks from Russia join the system via Harbin Bank, which means that Harbin Bank is expected to become a major base of cross-border RMB settlement for Russian banks and businesses.
Focusing on furthering cooperation with Russia and Northeast Asia, the area's administration has taken new steps to improve the business environment. For example, it has utilized internet technology to innovate its administrative platform, which allows Russian investors to apply for setting up businesses online.