SCIO press conference on China Customs' efforts to safeguard borders, advance Chinese modernization

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Mr. Yu Jianhua, minister of the General Administration of Customs of China (GACC)

Mr. Sun Yuning, vice minister of the GACC

Mr. Zhao Zenglian, director of the General Office of the GACC


Ms. Shou Xiaoli, deputy director general of the Press Bureau of the State Council Information Office (SCIO) and spokesperson of the SCIO


March 20, 2023

Shou Xiaoli:

Ladies and gentlemen, good morning. Welcome to this press conference held by the State Council Information Office (SCIO). Today, we are holding the 11th press conference in the series "Embarking on the New Journey — A Government Perspective." We are delighted to have invited Mr. Yu Jianhua, minister of the General Administration of Customs of China (GACC), to brief you on the efforts of China Customs to safeguard borders and advance Chinese modernization, and to take your questions. We also have with us Mr. Sun Yuning, vice minister of the GACC, and Mr. Zhao Zenglian, director of the General Office of the GACC.

Now, let's give the floor to Mr. Yu for his introduction.

Yu Jianhua:

Thank you. Ladies and gentlemen, friends from the media, good morning. My colleagues and I are delighted to be here today to meet and speak with you. First and foremost, on behalf of the GACC, I would like to express our gratitude to the media for your coverage of our work throughout the years, as well as for your oversight of our customs enforcement efforts. 

The GACC is the national agency responsible for border administration and supervision. As we embark on a new journey in the new era, the GACC has a deep understanding of the decisive significance of establishing Comrade Xi Jinping's core position on the Central Committee of the Chinese Communist Party (CPC) and in the Party as a whole and establishing the guiding role of Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era, and upholds Comrade Xi Jinping's core position on the Party Central Committee and in the Party as a whole and upholds the Central Committee's authority and its centralized, unified leadership. Guided by the strong leadership of the CPC Central Committee with Comrade Xi Jinping at its core, we have fully and faithfully applied the new development philosophy on all fronts, worked to create a new pattern of development, promoted high-quality development, and pursued progress while ensuring stability. We have fulfilled the responsibility of better balancing the domestic and international situations, coordinating epidemic prevention and control with economic and social development, and development with security. We remain focused on safeguarding borders, promoting development and contributing to overall economic and social progress.

Safeguarding borders is a fundamental duty of customs, and an important responsibility in the pursuit of a holistic approach to national security. We carry out lawful and science-based supervision and employ advanced technologies, such as big data and intelligent inspection, to enhance the efficiency of port inspections and tax collection, ensuring the safety and order of imported and exported goods. In 2022, tax revenue collected by customs reached 2.28 trillion yuan, an increase of 13.6%. We have been the first line of defense in preventing imported COVID-19 cases, having detected 55,000 positive cases among inbound personnel, which accounts for 67% of all port detections in the past three years. We have made significant contributions to winning a decisive victory in national epidemic prevention and control. We carry out strict inspections and quarantines to prevent the entry of major animal and plant epidemics and the invasion of alien species, having detected a total of 580,000 harmful organisms. We have severely cracked down on smuggling, having filed and investigated more than 4,500 criminal smuggling cases worth over 120 billion yuan, thus ensuring national security and a favorable business environment. We launched a 100-day special action on integrated management of dangerous goods at ports, clearing more than 2,400 batches of dangerous goods that were stockpiled at ports due to the epidemic, and detecting over 1,600 batches of false or concealed reports. This timely elimination of the significant risk of stockpiled dangerous goods in high-temperature weather conditions ensured port safety.

Promoting development is the due responsibility of the GACC in serving the people. We have taken multiple measures to serve foreign trade stability and quality improvement, continuously optimized the business environment at ports, made cross-border trade more convenient, and significantly reduced overall clearance time for imports and exports. We regularly released foreign trade data and various trade indices to serve macro decision-making and foreign trade enterprises. We have taken the lead in serving high-level opening-up, promoting innovative customs supervision systems for the Hainan Free Trade Port, free trade zones (FTZs), the Guangdong-Macao In-Depth Cooperation Zone in Hengqin, and comprehensive bonded zones. We have actively served the high-quality Belt and Road cooperation, promoted the "smart customs, smart borders, smart connectivity " concept to be included in the strategic planning of the World Customs Organization, and signed 80 customs cooperation agreements with many countries. We have supported the construction of international logistics corridors such as the China-Europe Railway Express. We have done everything possible to help enterprises overcome difficulties, issuing 23 support measures to promote the stable growth of foreign trade. We have launched activities inviting customs officials to the front line to promote policies, effectively doing practical things and solving problems for enterprises. We have conscientiously implemented tax reduction and preferential tax policies, with total tax cuts and refunds amounting to 285 billion yuan.

This year marks the first year of fully implementing the guiding principles of the 20th CPC National Congress. Customs across the country will focus on the "1+1+6" key tasks. The first "1" refers to deeply and solidly implementing the guiding principles of the 20th CPC National Congress by comprehensively studying it. The second "1" refers to promoting the construction of a socialist modernized customs with Chinese characteristics, with smart customs as a focal point. We will serve high-quality development and high-level opening-up with efficient customs supervision. The "6" refers to the six key tasks of building a full-chain safety supervision system, holding a strong first line of defense against the virus, implementing measures to promote stability and quality of foreign trade, serving high-quality Belt and Road cooperation, creating a high-level platform for opening-up, and exercising full and rigorous Party self-governance with high-quality standards. Customs across the country will keep in mind that we must never forget our original aspiration and founding mission, that we always stay modest, prudent and hardworking, and that we have the courage and ability to carry on our fight. The GACC will be loyal, responsible and dedicated to safeguarding the country's borders, promoting development, and working together toward a common goal. As per the new government's directives, we will continue to advance and refine our customs policies and practices to align with the grand blueprint. We will translate the key objectives outlined in the 20th CPC National Congress into concrete actions within customs, strive to achieve tangible outcomes and contribute to China's modernization efforts.

Now, my colleagues and I are happy to answer your questions. Thank you.

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