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Govt policy moves from the past week

Hu Yongqi
Updated: Nov 21,2017 1:09 PM     China Daily

Conference to promote a market environment

An inter-ministry joint conference system was approved by the State Council to strengthen market supervision to boost healthier economic development, according to a notice released on Nov 13.

The move targets establishing stronger coordination in market supervision during the 13th Five-Year Plan (2016-20).

The system was set to enhance inter-departmental and cross-regional coordination in solving major issues concerning market supervision and reinforce the implementation of market supervision policies. It also will promote business system reforms by advancing targets and reforms stipulated in the 13th Five-Year Plan for Market Supervision, the document said.

The new mechanism should also boost information-sharing and exchanges among different departments and regions, and promote timely lessons learned from these regions across the nation, the notice said.

The conference system, led by the State Administration for Industry and Commerce, will be composed of 35 ministerial-level departments, including the National Development and Reform Commission, the Ministry of Commerce, and the General Administration of Customs.

Zhang Mao, head of the State Administration for Industry and Commerce, is responsible for gathering officials to be in charge from other departments.

More State-owned assets for funds

China will transfer 10 percent of State-owned assets in some new sectors to the social security funds, in efforts to share the benefits of economic development with citizens, according to a plan released by the State Council on Nov 18.

State-owned enterprises administered by the central and provincial governments will transfer part of their capital under the plan, along with State-controlled medium and large-sized enterprises and financial institutions, the document said.

Central and regional SOEs that have been restructured into corporations will directly transfer their shares, while those that have yet to complete the transformation were urged to accelerate the reform and transfer shares afterwards, according to the plan.

The transfer proportion was set to be 10 percent of the State-owned shares and will be adjusted later considering the reform of the basic pension system and requirements for sustainable development.

The State Council grants the National Council for Social Security Fund the authority to hold the shares of central SOEs. The council can establish a management company to run the transferred shares at an appropriate time.

Provincial governments can set up local companies or entrust companies that have the capacity to run State-owned assets to manage shares transferred from regional SOEs.

As the economy develops and the number of elderly people increases, basic social security funds are facing pressure to pay, the plan said. The transfer will allow people around the country to enjoy the benefit of State-owned enterprises’ development, promote people’s welfare and improve the basic pension system, the document said. The transfer can also help realize fair distribution among different generations and strengthen sustainability of the pension system, it said.

The move was regarded as a vital way to promote diversified holdings of State-owned capital, though it will not change the capital’s property. The ones receiving the transfer will act as a financial investor, manage and operate the transferred capital, according to the plan. Profits earned will be submitted to fill the gap of the pension fund balance.

The transferred capital is required to be operated and audited independently, and its management will be evaluated and supervised by local authorities, according to the plan.

A pilot program will start with three to five central SOEs and two financial institutions overseen by the State-owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission. Other SOEs that meet the requirements will start transferring their shares next year, based on lessons learned from the pilot program.