As part of its efforts to cut down on import costs and increase local production, China said it is planning to give foreign and privately held companies access to domestic oil and gas exploration, Bloomberg reported Jan. 9.
China will allow companies that have at least $43 million in net assets to apply for licenses, Bloomberg reported, citing China's ministry of natural resources. The country previously gave permits only to state-owned companies, according to the report.
China in July 2019 also lifted its ownership restrictions for foreign investments in the oil and gas sector, among other industries, according to the article.
China and the U.S. are expected to sign "phase one" of an interim trade deal in the coming week.