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Business reforms fuel surge in new enterprises

By Ouyang Shijia | China Daily | Updated: 2020-09-05 09:13
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A view of Guangzhou's central business district, Oct 20, 2019. [Photo/Sipa]

Effective measures to deepen business reforms have fueled a healthy surge in the number of newly established companies in China and provided new impetus for recovery, according to the State Administration for Market Regulation.

By the end of July, the number of registered market entities in China reached 132 million, including 41.1 million enterprises, Tang Jun, deputy head of the State Administration for Market Regulation said during a media briefing on Friday.

According to the administration, about 64,000 newly registered market entities were added in the first seven months of the year, of which 21,000 are enterprises.

Tang said the healthy data indicated China's resolve to deepen business reforms, which in turn will spur entrepreneurship and boost the market.

The trial reform that envisaged separating permits from business licenses was implemented in 18 free trade zones nationwide. Following this, the time needed to start a business has been reduced to five working days or less, he said.

Next on the cards are steps to roll out permit/license reform nationwide, complete all the necessary procedures for starting a business online, further shorten the time needed to start a company to four working days or less, streamline approval procedures and maintain a fair and orderly market order.

According to a report released by the World Bank, China is now among the leading nations that are optimizing their business environment and encouraging reforms.

According to the Doing Business 2020 report, China was among the top 10 nations that saw considerable improvement in business matters for two years in a row. On a yearly basis, China moved up by 15 places from the 2019 ranking to the 31st position this year among the 190 economies mentioned in the report.

China's rapid improvement in easing business procedures has been lauded in a separate report from global professional services provider TMF Group. It said China is one of the most appealing investment destinations for foreign investors despite the ongoing novel coronavirus epidemic and mounting downside pressure.

Thun Lee, head of China operations at TMF Group, said the Chinese government has introduced a series of supportive policies and measures to steadily bolster the overall business environment for companies at home and abroad.

"For instance, the Foreign Investment Law and the regulation on improving the business environment, which took effect this year, will further simplify compliance and alleviate the challenges faced by the companies," Lee said. "To cushion the novel coronavirus effect, the Chinese government has come out with preferential policies to support the development of hard-hit companies, including foreign firms operating in China."

Huang Qifan, vice-chairman of the China Center for International Economic Exchanges and former mayor of Chongqing, said local governments must attach greater importance to infrastructure and make good use of the various development policies introduced by the central government.

"More efforts are also needed to offer the services required by enterprises," Huang said during an international business environment forum held last week in Beijing. "Enterprises nurture the market and help in the optimal allocation of resources. The outside world will not choose to decouple from China as long as we create a better business environment."

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