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Circular on Management of Foreign - Invested Construction Projects

(Promulgated by the National Environmental Protection Agency and Ministry of Foreign Trade and Economic Cooperation on March 14, 1992)

More and more foreign-invested enterprises (that is Chinese-foreign equity joint ventures, Chinese-foreign cooperative enterprises and wholly foreign-owned enterprises) have been established in China, along with the in-depth development of China's reform and opening to the outside world. The following Circular is hereby issued for the purpose of intensifying the management of environmental protection of foreign -invested construction projects, preventing environmental pollution and ecological destruction, absorbing foreign capital and introducing advanced technologies from overseas:

1. Foreign businessmen must comply with the environmental protection laws, regulations and relevant provisions of China when they make investments in the construction projects within the areas of China, prevent environmental pollution and ecological destruction and accept the supervision and management of the competent department of the environmental protection. Construction projects with foreign investment shall comply with the technical policies and relevant requirements of the state for environmental protection.

2. It is under strictly control to import of raw materials, products, technologies and equipment from abroad that may seriously pollute the environment and are difficult to be treated and to prevent the transfer of foreign pollution sources to China.

It is prohibited to import of the projects that may seriously pollute and destroy the environment, without any available effective treatment measures and whose discharge of pollutants in excess of the standards prescribed by the state. It is restricted to import the projects that may cause environmental pollution, destroy the environment or being difficult to be treated.While importing the projects that there are no domestic associated measures available for pollution control in China, advanced production techniques and appropriately advanced facilities for environmental protection shall be imported simultaneously.

3. All foreign-invested construction projects that may have an impact on the environment must comply with the provisions on the management of environmental protection of construction projects of the State and implement the examination and approval system for the environmental impact statement.The environmental impact statement of construction projects of Chinese-foreign equity joint ventures and Chinese-foreign cooperative enterprises shall be examined and approved in line with the existing provisions on the competence and procedures of examination and approval.

The environmental impact statement for foreign-invested construction projects shall be examined and approved by the competent department of environmental protection at the same level of the relevant administration that approved the establishment of the foreign-invested joint ventures.

Prior to the application for the establishment of the foreign-invested enterprises, foreign businessmen shall submit the layout of the selected site, scale, plan of products, technology, discharge of pollutants, measures for the pollution control and other relevant materials of the construction projects to the competent department of the environmental protection that has the competence over the examination and approval. They shall also handle the examination and approval procedures for the environmental impact report (statement) in accordance with the request of the department.

As for foreign-invested construction projects whose environmental impact report (statement) has not been approved by the competent department of environmental protection, other authorities of examination and approval authorised by the competent economic and trade departments or the government shall not grant the approval to the application for the establishment of enterprises.

4. The environmental protection facilities of the foreign-invested construction projects shall be based on the examination and approval opinions of the environmental impact assessment report (statement) and shall be designed in accordance with the "Rules on the Design for Environmental Protection of Construction Projects". The "three simultaneities" system shall be implemented that the facilities for prevention and control of pollution and other public hazards shall be designed, constructed and put into operation simultaneously with the construction of the principal part of the project. After completion of the project, its discharge of pollutants must comply with the discharge standards specified by the state and the local government. Foreign-invested construction projects located in the area where the total pollutant loading is under control, the discharge shall also comply with the requirements on the control of the total pollutant loading.

5. Prior to production and formal operation of the construction project, the environmental protection facilities shall be inspected, accepted and examined by the competent department of environmental protection that originally examined and approved the facilities in accordance with the prescribed procedures and requirements. If in failure to pass the acceptance and check, they are not allowed to be put into operation and use.

6. Construction projects invested by companies, enterprises, other economic organisations or individuals of Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan shall implement the provisions prescribed in this Circular.

(This English version is for your reference only.In case any discrepancy exists between the Chinese and English context, the Chinese version shall prevail.)

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