Further adjust catalog of permits for industrial products
The State Council issued a circular to further adjust the catalog of permits for industrial products and test streamlining approval procedures.
Permits for 19 categories of industrial products will be abolished, and those of three categories of industrial products will be replaced by compulsory certification management.
Permit management will also be delegated to quality supervision authorities at provincial levels by the national quality supervision watchdog, the General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine, according to the circular.
Categories of industrial production licensing will be decreased further to 38.
Work assigned to implement administrative reform
The State Council has issued a plan concerning the implementation of work assignments, which was decided at a teleconference on the reform of streamlining administration on June 13.
Related authorities are asked to undertake tasks including developing a nationwide fees catalogue, continuing the reduction of licenses and improving government services to provide conveniences for the public.
Expand medical insurance payment reform
The State Council released a guideline on the implementation of medical insurance payment reform on June 28.
Budget management for medical insurance funds should be improved, and diversified payment methods should be practiced starting in 2017.
By 2020, the reform of medical insurance payments should cover all medical institutions and services, and there will be less proportion of fees for services.
More administrative fees cut
Fees will be reduced for handling vehicle licenses, exit and entry documents and using telecom numbers starting on July 1, according to a document released by the National Development and Reform Commission and the Ministry of Finance.
The aim is to ease social burdens and develop the real economy.
Free textbooks for compulsory education
From the spring semester this year, students who receive compulsory education in cities and rural areas nationwide will be offered textbooks for free, according to a document co-issued by the ministries of education and finance.
Cost of textbooks for national and local curriculum will be covered by central finances and local finances, respectively.
Procurement of free textbooks should be carried out in line with government regulations.
Lift barriers to foreign investment further
China announced on June 28 that it will use a “negative list” management approach for all foreign investment.
The National Development and Reform Commission and Ministry of Commerce issued a revised foreign investment catalogue on June 28, which includes the negative list as well as sectors and industries that the government wants to encourage foreign companies to invest in.
From July 28, the negative list approach, which identifies sectors and businesses that are off-limits or restricted, will be implemented nationwide.
Under the approach, government approval is not required for most foreign investment and only investment on the negative list remains subject to approval.
China to crack down on IPR infringement and counterfeits
On June 7, the State Administration for Industry and Commerce issued a notice listing 2017’s major tasks in cracking down on intellectual property infringement as well as counterfeit and shoddy goods manufacturing.
The document calls for the protection of intellectual property rights and consumer rights. Actions will be taken against intellectual property infringement and to enhance trademark protection.
Step up scrutiny over insurance firms
China’s top insurance regulator said on June 23 it would tighten scrutiny over the launch of new insurance companies in a move to defuse risks in the sector.
The China Insurance Regulatory Commission (CIRC) will strengthen oversight to ensure that new insurance firms operate according to company plans, funding provided by shareholders is authentic, and that their stakes are not transferred during preparations of the companies, according to a CIRC statement.
The commission will also evaluate the performance of company chairmen and senior management staff more strictly, and push the firms to improve regulatory compliance.
The move is aimed at enhancing corporate governance and preventing risks at the source, the CIRC said.
State Administration for Industry and Commerce to fight shams
Liu Hongbin, a self-proclaimed traditional Chinese medicine expert, has received major public criticism after it was discovered that she is not actually a TCM practitioner and the pharmaceutical products she endorsed on TV programs were actually shams.
This raised concerns from the State Administration for Industry and Commerce, which deployed all industry and commerce departments to research and investigate the case. Results will eventually be released to the public.