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Private investment to get boost

By Wang Yanfei | China Daily | Updated: 2017-10-22 07:46
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China will take more steps to boost the private sector by lowering the investment threshold in emerging industries, a senior official with the nation's top economic regulator said on Saturday.

Zhang Yong, vice-chairman of the National Development and Reform Commission, said private investment, while growing at a slow pace, should not be a concern, as it has to do with the nation's economic restructuring.

The government is trying to rely less on old economic drivers and more on newly emerging sectors.

"Destocking in the property market and cutting overcapacity in manufacturing, both part of key efforts on economic upgrading, have led to the growth slowdown," he said.

However, the government does have a major role in guiding more private capital into emerging sectors with decent returns, according to Zhang.

The central authorities will lower the investment threshold for private investors, expand market access, and introduce more measures to help ensure their rights, he said.

In the first nine months of this year, private fixed-asset investment saw 6 percent year-on-year growth, compared with 11 percent growth in investment by State-owned enterprises during the same period, data from the National Bureau of Statistics show.

Xu Hongcai, an economist with the China Center for International Economic Exchanges, said efforts to ensure the rights of private investors are crucial, as SOEs usually enjoy more preferential policies, especially in government-initiated infrastructure construction projects.

The central government also should make private investment in public-private partnership projects more convenient, said Xue Qitang, a Beijing-based lawyer specializing in PPP projects.

(China Daily 10/22/2017 page3)

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