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China provides Shenzhen extra autonomy for market reform and integration

© Reuters. The broader picture: In Hong Kong's quiet border areas, two systems coexist

SHANGHAI (Reuters) – China on Sunday took detailed steps to give Shenzhen more autonomy to allow the southern financial and technology center to carry out pilot reforms related to market development and economic integration.

The changes announced by the National Development and Reform Commission include more flexibility in implementing reforms in areas such as land use and cross-border arbitration.

Shenzhen will launch equity index futures products and be allowed to issue offshore government bonds in yuan. Some companies may pilot shares or Chinese depository receipts, which Chinese tech companies listed overseas can use to list at home.

The commission lists steps to further integrate the Greater Bay Area: Shenzhen and eight other cities in Guangdong Province as well as the adjacent areas of Hong Kong and Macau.

These measures include setting up a big data center, experimenting with permitted drug use between territories, and setting up a cross-border arbitration center.

Last week, President Xi Jinping visited Shenzhen to commemorate 40 years since it was established as China's first economic zone.

Xi urged Shenzhen to strengthen property rights and business protection, and said the Shenzhen government would be given more leeway to reform and become a model city.

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