Ministry of Commerce (China)

The Ministry of Commerce of the People's Republic of China (MOFCOM) is a cabinet-level executive agency of the State Council of China. It is responsible for formulating policy on foreign trade, export and import regulations, foreign direct investments, consumer protection, market competition (competition regulator) and negotiating bilateral and multilateral trade agreements. It is in charge of the administration of foreign trade pursuant to the Foreign Trade Law.[1] The current Commerce minister is Wang Wentao.

Ministry of Commerce of the People's Republic of China
Zhōnghuá Rénmín Gònghéguó Shāngwùbù
National Emblem of the People's Republic of China (2).svg
Logo of the Ministry of Commerce
Ministry of Commerce of China (20210527180200).jpg
Agency overview
FormedMarch 2003; 19 years ago (2003-03)
Preceding agency
  • Ministry of Foreign Trade and Economic Co-operation
Jurisdiction China
Minister responsible
Parent agencyState Council
Ministry of Commerce
Simplified Chinese中华人民共和国商务部
Traditional Chinese中華人民共和國商務部


Before October 1949, the Ministry of Economic Affairs was the governing agency of the Republic of China on the mainland responsible for economic trade issues. The agency was created in 1931 and reorganized in 1937.

In November 1949, a month after the People's Republic of China was established, the Chinese Communist Party formed the Ministry of Trade (贸易部) while the MOEA continued to operate in Taiwan and several other islands

In August 1952, the Ministry was renamed to Ministry of Foreign Trade (对外贸易部). Ye Jizhuang was the first Minister and died in the post in 1967.

In March 1982, the Ministry of Foreign Trade was merged with the Ministry of Foreign Economic Liaison (对外经济联络部), the State Import and Export Regulation Commission (国家进出口管理委员会), and the State Foreign Investment Regulation Commission (国家外国投资管理委员会), and became the Ministry of Foreign Economic Relations and Trade (对外经济贸易部).

In March 1993, the Ministry of Foreign Economic Relations and Trade was renamed to the Ministry of Foreign Trade and Economic Cooperation (对外贸易经济合作部).[2]

In the spring of 2003, the former Ministry of Foreign Trade and Economic Cooperation went through a reorganization and was renamed Ministry of Commerce.

The ministry also incorporates the former State Economic and Trade Commission and the State Development Planning Commission.

Ministry of Trade
Ministry of Foreign TradeMinistry of Foreign Economic LiaisonState Import and Export Regulation CommissionState Foreign Investment Regulation Commission
Ministry of Foreign Trade and Economic Cooperation
State Economic and Trade CommissionState Development Planning Commission
Ministry of Commerce

List of ministersEdit

Name Took office Left office
Minister of Trade
Ye Jizhuang October 1949 August 1952
Minister of Foreign Trade
Ye Jizhuang[3] August 1952 June 1967
Lin Haiyun[3] June 1967 July 1970
Bai Xiangguo[3] July 1970 October 1973
Li Qiang[3] October 1973 September 1981
Zheng Tuobin September 1981 March 1982
Minister of Foreign Economic Relations and Trade
Chen Muhua March 1982 March 1985
Zheng Tuobin March 1985 December 1990
Li Lanqing December 1990 March 1993
Minister of Foreign Trade and Economic Co-operation
Wu Yi March 1993 March 1998
Shi Guangsheng March 1998 March 2003
Minister of Commerce
Lü Fuyuan March 2003 February 2004
Bo Xilai February 2004 December 2007
Chen Deming December 2007 March 2013
Gao Hucheng March 2013 February 2017
Zhong Shan February 2017 December 2020
Wang Wentao December 2020 Incumbent

Departmental structureEdit

The Ministry of Commerce is structured into the following departments:

Foreign Economic Cooperation
Fair Trade for Import and Export
Market Economic Order
Foreign Investment Administration
Market Operation
Aid to Foreign Countries
Treaty and Law
WTO Affairs
Trade in Services
Market System
Commercial Reform
Asian Affairs
Western Asian & African Affairs
American & Oceanian Affairs
International Trade and Economic Affairs
Taiwan, Hong Kong & Macao
General Economic Affairs
Foreign Trade
Electromechanical Products & Science and Technology Industry
Administrative / Corporate Services
General Office
Human Resources
Policy Research
Injury Investigation
Negotiation Office
Retired Officials
Committee of Communist Party
Discipline Supervision & Investigation Group
Bureau of Discipline Supervision
Chinese Academy of International Trade and Economic Cooperation
World Economy
Consumption and Distribution
International Trade
Foreign Investment
Industry Development and Strategy
Commodity Research
International Trade in Services
Overseas Investment and Economic Cooperation
Asian and African Studies
Development Cooperation
Credit and E-commerce
Strategic Trade and Security


MOFCOM and the CEPAEdit

MOFCOM's responsibility includes fostering closer partnership between the economies of the Special Administrative Regions of Hong Kong and Macau, respectively, with the economy of the rest of the People's Republic of China. To that end the Vice Minister An Min, and the previous Financial Secretary of Hong Kong, Antony Leung, concluded the Closer Economic Partnership Arrangement (CEPA). New agreements are continually negotiated between An and the current Financial Secretary John Tsang under the auspices of the CEPA. Similar agreements were also concluded between the MOFCOM and Secretariat for Economy and Finance of Macau.

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "Foreign Trade Law of the People's Republic of China". Retrieved 2019-11-19.
  2. ^ "Chinese Ministry of Foreign Trade and Economic Cooperation". Retrieved 2021-11-30.
  3. ^ a b c d Gene T. Hsiao (1977). The Foreign Trade of China: Policy, Law, and Practice. University of California Press. p. 71. ISBN 978-0-520-03257-6.
  4. ^ [1] Archived April 1, 2008, at the Wayback Machine

External linksEdit