The signing ceremony for key projects at the Hainan Free Trade Port. Photo: Hainan government

South China’s Hainan Free Trade Port has signed 35 key investment projects, including eight foreign-funded ones, as the province attracts investors at home and abroad with its opening-up.

An on-site and online signing ceremony for the projects was held in Haikou, the capital of Hainan Province, on Saturday, with the total value surpassing 6.4 billion yuan (US$903 million). They cover free trade port construction, industrial development and public services.

French energy giant EDF, the Shenzhen Stock Exchange and China Eastern Airlines were among the participating enterprises.

On June 1, China released a master plan for the Hainan Free Trade Port, aiming to build the whole of Hainan Island into a globally influential high-level free trade port by the middle of the century.

New airline in Sanya

An international airline company will be created jointly by China Eastern Airlines and its partners to serve the construction of the Hainan free trade port, according to a strategic cooperation framework agreement signed on Saturday.

The joint venture, named Sanya International Airlines, will be controlled by China Eastern Airlines, with its stakeholders including Hainan Province Transport Investment Holding Co Ltd, Sanya Development Holdings Ltd, Juneyao Airlines and Trip.com Group.

Aviation is Hainan’s most important transport solution due to the island province’s unique geographical conditions and location, and its rapid development needs a convenient and well-connected aviation network, Xinhua News Agency reported.

China Eastern was one of the first carriers to launch a business in Hainan in 1998. Now, the carrier is operating flights in three airports in the province and making up to 3 million passenger trips annually.

Dhaka-Guangzhou flight

The Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC), the country’s aviation regulator, issued its first international flight “circuit-breaker” directive on Sunday, suspending flights between Bangladesh and Guangzhou city for four weeks.

According to a notice issued by the CAAC, a total of 17 passengers tested positive for the novel coronavirus on a flight operated by China Southern Airlines from Bangladesh’s capital Dhaka to Guangzhou in Guangdong province last Thursday.

In light with the international flights adjustment policy issued on June 4, the administration will suspend the operation of the flight for four weeks starting from June 22.

While easing restrictions on international passenger flights recently, China also has a whole set of risk prevention and control mechanisms in place, including the adoption of a “reward and circuit breaker mechanism” for carriers to increase or suspend flights in light of the carriers’ epidemic control work.

Economy recovery

The resumption of work, production, business activities and markets in May has advanced steadily, production and demands were improved, employment and prices were generally stable, positive changes were accumulating and the national economy recovered gradually, the National Bureau of Statistics said Monday.

Industrial production continued to pick up with equipment manufacturing and high-tech manufacturing witnessing fast growth, while the growth of index services production shifted from negative to positive with modern service industries growing well, said the NBS.

The decline of investment in fixed assets narrowed significantly, and the growth of investment in high-tech industries and social sectors shifted from negative to positive. The growth of consumer price dropped, and the decline of producer prices for industrial products expanded, it added.

The urban surveyed unemployment rate was generally stable with the newly increased employment witnessed a small decline, it said.

Market liquidity

China’s central bank pumped cash into the financial system through open market operations to maintain liquidity in the market Monday.

A total of 200 billion yuan was injected into the market via a medium-term lending facility (MLF), according to the People’s Bank of China, the central bank. The funds will mature in one year at an interest rate of 2.95%.

The MLF tool was introduced in 2014 to help commercial and policy banks maintain liquidity by allowing them to borrow from the central bank using securities as collateral.

The story was written by Xu Jiangshan and Liu Licong and first published at ATimesCN.com. It was translated by Nadeem Xu.

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