Support for private businesses will lift economic growth

China will unveil more support measures for the country's private businesses as well as small and medium-sized enterprises, a State Council executive meeting announced Monday.

China will unveil more support measures for the country’s private businesses as well as small and medium-sized enterprises, a State Council executive meeting announced Monday.

Increasing support for the development of private businesses and SMEs helps strengthen the internal impetus for economic development, boosts entrepreneurship and innovation, and expands employment, stated the meeting, which was chaired by Premier Li Keqiang.

China will also lower or remove import and export duties on a number of items starting next year as part of a tariff adjustment package announced yesterday.

The State Council meeting said the country will work to build a fair and convenient business environment.

It will ensure enterprises of different ownerships and scales enjoy fair treatment in terms of tender processes and land usages.

The country has vowed to remove the minimum registered capital and shareholding structure requirements as well as other restrictions on private investment’s entry to sectors such as resource exploitation, transportation and public facilities, unless otherwise stipulated, it said.

The country will also step up the reduction of taxes and fees, and improve financing services.

The country will encourage inclusive financing and expand the application of its re-lending policies.

It said the country would protect private entrepreneurs’ personal property in accordance with law, and establish compensation mechanisms to cover losses caused by the adjustment of statutory planning.

The country will further push forward with reforms to streamline regulation and delegate powers, improve regulation and optimize services to improve its business environment.

After certain pilot schemes, the country plans to scrap enterprises’ account-opening permits before the end of next year.

China will also make the intellectual property review procedures more efficient and shorten the average time for trademark registration review to five months in 2019.

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Finance said that to expand imports, more than 700 items will be subjected to temporary lower import tariff rates starting on January 1.

Tariffs on some fur imports will be reduced while relatively low temporary import tariff rates will continue to be imposed on much-needed advanced equipment such as aircraft engines as well as resource products such as natural feeds, the ministry said.

Export tariffs on products including chemical fertilizers and iron ore will be scrapped, the ministry said.

China will also apply conventional tariffs on products from 23 countries and regions, including further reductions in tariffs under free trade pacts between China and relevant countries.

This will result in lower tariffs with trade partners, including New Zealand, Peru and Costa Rica.

Imported goods from Hong Kong and Macau into the Chinese mainland will enjoy zero tariffs under relevant pacts on goods trade.

The preferential tariff rates with Bangladesh and Laos will be adjusted along with a reduction in the most-favored-nation tariff rates.

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