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China revises law to better support SMEs

Xinhua | Updated: 2017-09-01 16:09

BEIJING - China's top legislature on Friday revised a legislation to better protect the interests of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).

The revised law was adopted after a third reading at the bimonthly session of the National People's Congress (NPC) Standing Committee, which runs from Monday to Friday.

The revision has strengthened protection on the property rights and other rights of SMEs and increased support in areas such as financing, taxation and employment.

Under the amendment, "to maintain the legal rights and interests of SMEs" was inserted into the first section of the law, which clarifies the law's aims.

Meanwhile, "the country protects the property rights and other legal rights and interests of SMEs and their investors" was added to the section that details rights protection.

Financial institutions should serve SMEs efficiently and fairly, and the country encourages financial institutions to provide SMEs with tailored products and services, according to the revised law.

It added that tax benefits and reduction of administrative charges will be offered to SMEs.

To support SMEs in attracting professional talent, the country encourages research institutions and colleges to cooperate with SMEs on the transformation of scientific and technological achievements.

Although SMEs generate some 60 percent of China's GDP and 80 percent of jobs, they have long been confronted with difficulties in retaining employees and getting bank loans.

"Work has been done to ensure both fair market competition and protection of SMEs in the legislation," Guo Linmao, an official with the Legislative Affairs Commission of the NPC Standing Committee, told a press conference Friday afternoon.

The revision aims to create an easy environment and some sense of gain for SMEs, according to Guo.

The amendment has also strengthened inspection on government authorities' facilitation of SME development, and clarified legal responsibilities for those who violated the rights of SMEs, he said.

The revised law will enter into effect on Jan 1, 2018.

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