New negative lists to further ease limits for foreign investment: MOC

BEIJING, May 31 (Xinhua) -- China is working on new negative lists for market access of foreign investment, an official said Thursday.

Restrictions on energy, resources, infrastructure, transportation, commerce circulation and professional services will be removed or loosened in the upcoming lists, Gao Feng with the Ministry of Commerce (MOC) said Thursday at a press conference.

The country has already announced measures to further liberalize the finance and automobile sectors.

Gao said the MOC, along with other government agencies, is stepping up efforts on two negative lists expected to be released and implemented by the end of June, one for nationwide implementation and one for pilot free trade zones.

There will be a transitional period for some industries and specific measures will be unveiled for the opening in the next few years, Gao added.

China has rolled out an array of measures to significantly broaden market access since the beginning of 2018, a year that marks the 40th anniversary of the country's reform and opening-up policy.

Foreign investment in China hit a new high of 877.56 billion yuan (about 136.72 billion U.S. dollars) in 2017, up by 7.9 percent year on year.