The State Council holds the weekly policy briefing on June 26, focusing on promoting the use of Internet Plus and the insurance investment fund to serve the development of the real economy.[Photo by Wang Zhuangfei/China Daily]
Hu Kaihong (host):
Ladies and gentlemen, good morning. Welcome to today’s policy briefing. The executive meeting of the State Council on June 24 discussed some policies and measures on promoting the use of Internet Plus and the insurance investment fund to serve the development of the real economy. Today we have Lin Nianxiu, vice chairman of the National Development and Reform Commission, Vice-Minister of Industry and Information Technology Huai Jinpeng and Liang Tao, assistant chairman of the China Insurance Regulatory Commission to give you a brief introduction and take your questions. First, let’s welcome Mr. Lin.
Good morning, friends of the press. I’m glad to attend today’s policy briefing. The State Council has approved an Internet Plus guideline at an executive meeting on June 24, which is an important document. I’d like brief you on the framework and main points of this document. The Central Committee of the Communist Party of China and the State Council have attached great importance to the development of Internet integration. President Xi Jinping has said that human beings have entered a historical stage of the Internet era and this era has played a role in advancing the development of human beings. Premier Li Keqiang also clearly required documents related to Internet Plus to be drafted in this year’s government work report. Premier Li has noted the huge potential of Internet Plus and its key role in improving comprehensive national strength, calling for efforts to comply with this trend. Other State Council leaders also made relevant instructions. To put the State Council’s decision into place, ten departments, including the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology and the Ministry of Finance, have jointly drafted this guideline based on opinions from all parties.
The guideline adheres to be guided by reform and innovation as well as market demand, and let the enterprises play a major role. It also stressed the importance to give full play to China’s advantages in the scale and application of the Internet, urged efforts to expand the Internet from consumption to production, improve the level of industrial development and enhance creative capability, thus promoting economic and social development.
The guideline includes three parts. The first part outlined the general principals of implementing the Internet Plus.
It requires that priority should be given to expanding the depth and width of Internet’s integration with various economic and social areas, to promote the interactive development of the Internet economy and real economy.
Specifically, efforts will be focused on four aspects; deepening the reform of systems and mechanisms to invigorate the development; improving the quality and effectiveness of industries and promoting their transformation; fostering new industries to create the new growth points, and innovating the government’s service patterns by creating a safe network environment and providing better public services.
Efforts will be guided by five principals.
First, sticking to opening up and sharing so as to create a good development environment;
Second, sticking to integration and innovation so as to create new engines of economic development;
Third, sticking to reform and transformation, especially the upgrading of traditional industries and public services;
Fourth, to build competitive advantages for the new round of scientific revolution and industrial transformation;
Fifth, to establish a scientific and effective way for market regulation to ensure security of both the network and the market.
The efforts in promoting Internet Plus are aimed to realize the following goals:
First, to improve the quality and effectiveness of economic development, achieve active progress in upgrading the traditional industries and bringing up Internet-based new industries;
Second, to offer more convenient public services to benefit more people, and optimizing the distribution of public service resources;
Third, to improve the support of network facilities and consolidate the foundation of industries, and enhancing safety guarantees;
Fourth, to create a more open and inclusive development environment and effectively break barriers faced by the development of Internet integration.
The second part of the guideline is about specific activities and tasks. It pointed out 11 specific activities including Internet Plus-based entrepreneurship and innovation, modern agriculture and inclusive finance. It also clarifies 40 priority tasks in accordance with the characters of Internet’s integration with relevant areas and the current main problems.
However, as the Internet Plus could be applied in a wide range of areas, we will remain open-minded in our future work.
The third part is about the policies and measures that ensure the promotion of Internet Plus. It outlined 25 items of measures from seven aspects including consolidating the foundation of development, strengthening the drive of innovation, expanding overseas cooperation and increasing intelligent support.
After the guideline is officially issued, the National Development and Reform Commission will work with relevant departments including the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology to implement the tasks.
We will endeavor to promote the deep integration of the Internet with various areas and push forward their innovative development, to facilitate industrial transformation, ensuring the medium to high-level economic growth with the support of Internet Plus.
Thank you and I’m willing to answer your questions.
Now, Mr Huai please.
Good morning, everyone. I am very delighted to join Mr Lin to exchange ideas with you on the guideline of the Internet Plus strategy.
Mr Lin just mentioned that President Xi Jinping and Premier Li Keqiang attach great importance to the development of the Internet and also made several instructions on this aspect. President Xi said that “without informatization there is no modernization”.
During Premier Li’s inspection tour to the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT), when he mentioned China Made 2015 and Internet Plus, he stressed the importance to integrate the new type of industrialization with informatization and use Internet Plus to promote China’s economy to a higher level. And State Council leaders also attach great importance and made several instructions on Internet Plus.
Currently, economic and social development has entered a new phase, the integrated development of the real economy and online virtual economy has become a tendency of the domestic and global development.
It has three characteristics: first, the Internet is featured by openness and sharing; second, the integration of technology and economy is becoming more and more close. Their profound integration has created unlimited space for social development. Thirdly, the main features of Internet, openness and sharing, have also created a favorable environment for mass innovation and business startups. These three characteristics combining with the Internet Plus guideline created an unprecedented flexible environment and policy support to promote mass innovation and business startups and the implementation of the integrated development of the real economy and virtual economy. Therefore it plays a vital role in upgrading our manufacturing industry and promoting the economic development to a higher level
With development, China has laid a primary foundation to promote the development and expansion of Internet Plus. Firstly, China’s Internet enterprises and industries occupy a very important position in the world. Of the top 10 Internet companies in the world, four are from China, and 40 percent of the top 30 Internet companies in the world are from China. The second characteristic is the cross-industry integration of the Internet. It is now expanding into the secondary industry including R & D, design, manufacturing and energy mentioned by Mr. Lin earlier from the tertiary industry such as news media and commercial circulation. And third is a primary consensus that without sufficient development of the real economy and manufacturing it is difficult to promote the effective development of the service industry. But at the same time without the rapid development of the service industry and new economy, the real economy and manufacturing industry will find it hard to achieve great development.
The Internet Plus guideline will further promote economic and social development and create a development space for mass innovation and business startups.
MIIT will jointly work with other related departments to offer better government services and create a favorable environment to promote the development of Internet Plus
Thank you for your attention to this issue. I am willing to join with Mr. Lin to exchange ideas with you and answer your questions. Thank you.
Thank you Mr Huai. Now let Mr Liang make an introduction.
Good morning, friends of the press. I’m glad to attend today’s policy briefing. The State Council approved a plan to set up an insurance investment fund at an executive meeting on June 24. Now I’d like to brief you about it.
First, I’d like to introduce the background and meaning of this plan. Since 2012, the China Insurance Regulatory Commission has endeavored to push forward the marketization reform on the use of insurance premiums as well as expanding the channels to use the money, which has led to an obvious increase of return on investment. Insurance institutions have also participated in the construction of major projects such as the Shanghai-Beijing high-speed railway, offering strong support to the development of the real economy. However, there are also problems and difficulties in establishing cooperation on large projects as well as a lack of professional platforms and coordination.
The establishment of the fund is the insurance industry’s effort to innovate forms to utilize the insurance premium to facilitate the development of the real economy. This not only conforms to the demands of the insurance industry, but also invigorates the transformation of the real economy.
Using insurance premiums this way means more money will be guided to participate in the construction of national strategic projects.
It will also play a key role in stabilizing economic growth, especially by offering equity investment that the real economy is in urgent need of.
Moreover, this fund will help to guide long-term capital to be invested in industries and areas with good growth prospects, thus promoting economic transformation.
Second, I’d like to brief you the main points of this plan.
The fund will stick to serving the development of the real economy while adhering to commercial sustainability.
It aims to set up a strategic, active and comprehensive investment platform that could demonstrate the insurance industry’s long-term capital advantage.
Therefore, it will serve two goals:
First, as a direct investment fund, it will meet the market demands generated from China’s national economic strategies and mixed-ownership reform;
Second, as the fund of funds, it will be invested in various investment funds at home and abroad.
This fund will be mainly invested in the renovation of shantytowns, the construction of urban infrastructure, major water conservancy projects and the transportation facilities in central and western China.
It will also involve investment in the One Belt, One Road Initiative, and major projects on international production capacity cooperation.
This fund is a limited partnership set up according to the Partnership Law and registered in the industry and commerce department. Limited liability companies established with the joint contributions of insurance asset management companies will serve as general partners while insurance companies will act as limited partners.
The fund will solicit contributions as a way of marketization, which means professional management teams will be hired to manage the fund, and the fund will exit in multiple channels in order to improve investment efficiency.
The scale of the fund is expected to be 300 billion yuan, and it will be raised in stages. The first stage is expected to raise 100 billion yuan.
Next, we will push forward the establishment of the fund according the plan officially approved by the State Council.
Thank you. Now questions, please.
China News Service:
I have a question for Mr. Lin. What difficulties do we face when we launch the Internet Plus strategy? And how will the government solve these problems?
Thanks for your question. It is a direct one. As I’ve said earlier, the Internet is involved deeply with every industry nowadays. The era of the Internet has come. We face three dominant problems when promoting Internet Plus. First, we are not fully aware of the Internet industry. On the one hand, some traditional industries are resisting the Internet because of their old-fashioned business models and thoughts. On the other hand, the Internet companies don’t fully understand these traditional industries either. Second, there are industry barriers. Some industries are internally rigid, complicatedly supervised and highly inefficient with a high entry threshold. Third, we lack technology support. The broadband network developed very quickly in China in recent years, however, problems such as relatively low speed, and high charges remain. And the State Council has addressed these problems. Lacking professional standards, multidisciplinary talents and data release are other factors which limited the development of the Internet Plus Strategy.
To solve these problems, I think we should fully use the role of the market and conduct better governance together to boost the Internet Plus Strategy. Administrative streamlining, combining supervision with power delegation, optimizing services, promoting business startups, mass innovation are on the same lines in creating a better environment for the launch of the Internet Plus Strategy.
We have measures involving five aspects. First, we have a clear direction. We did enough field research and acquired highly representative feedbacks earlier and proposed 11 steps to promote the Internet Plus Strategy. These steps exemplify the next movement of our Internet Plus Strategy.
Second, we endeavored to create a better environment. As Mr. Huai just mentioned, the Internet Plus Strategy involves a lot of industries and areas, so the guideline issued aims at establishing an inclusive policy environment. For example, the guideline pledged to decrease limits and lower the entry threshold for related products and services, issue negative lists — which indicate Internet firms have access to all sectors except those included in the lists — and encourage them to innovate.
Third, we will launch pilot programs. The Internet industry is an innovative one which needs pilot programs. We launched a pilot project regarding integration of the Internet and the industry in the manufacturing sector for example. We carried out a green power trading platform in the smart energy sector. All these pilot programs are supposed to set examples for promoting Internet Plus Strategy.
Fourth, we will carry out big projects. We will give more financial support from the central government and welcome private capital to carry out a series of big Internet Plus projects. These projects will work as new engines for our economy and the NDRC has already worked on this.
Fifth, we will create a coordinating system for promoting Internet Plus. The guideline helps create a coordinating mechanism between ministries and practices and proved that such a mechanism can ensure work is carried out effectively and efficiently. A Chinese know-how consulting committee will also be established to provide professional advice for the government.
I believe that putting these policies in place will help cultivate a new driving force for the economy and create a new growth engine for the future development.
China National Radio:
My question goes to Mr. Huai. Premier Li Keqiang checked on the development concerning the Internet Plus and Made in China 2025 during a recent visit to the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology. Is there any bonding point that could help the two develop in coordination? What are the next measures to arrange them as a whole? The creation of an industrial Internet is under study, so what does it include and what are its goals?
We have been studying your question for quite a long time and discussing it via international cooperation. Premier Li stressed that China must aim to upgrade its manufacturing by embracing emerging technology such as big data, to transform the economy to a higher level. Minister Miao Wei said the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology boasts two kinds of technologies — one is manufacturing, the other is information — and their integration will definitely make an impact on the whole industry. The State Council released a guideline on Internet Plus in June, stating that China will be fully equipped with this capacity by 2025, which coincides with the timeline in the “three steps” strategy proposed in the Made in China 2025 plan issued in May.
As to the integration of Internet Plus and Made in China 2025, we will implement more policies to promote efficiency and quality in our work. The manufacturing sector’s ability to innovate will be enhanced as it embraces state-of-the-art information technology which will result in superior products. On the other side, Internet Plus will help manufacturing by integrating key segments such as design, production, circulation and maintenance. With the encouragement of mass innovation and entrepreneurship, it will be a great opportunity for China’s manufacturing industries to venture abroad. Therefore, I think, although with different development modes, Made in China 2025 and Internet Plus are consistent in transforming the economy into a high-end economy and seeing the realization of the Chinese Dream.
When it comes to the building of the industrial Internet, we are dedicated to systematic research, trial networks and application models in some important fields. Especially when the industrial Internet is yet to form and there is no unified international standard, China should and is able to form an agreed standard in cooperation with other countries. We will also create an innovation center for China’s manufacturing, in an effort to enhance technology and serve industrial development.
I have a question to Mr. Liang. Currently the real economy faces big challenges in financing. And the insurance fund, as one kind of commercial fund, is looking to be profitable too. How can the new investment insurance fund maintain its sustainability and balance between long-term effectiveness and profits?
It’s an important question. Commercial insurance fund is not public funds in nature.
So looking from this aspect, we see it prefers long-term investment with stable returns. The preference in long-term investment makes it possible to battle against the fluctuation of the economic cycle, and it’s seeking key projects and livelihoods projects that enjoy widespread demand and a long span of returns.
Its preference for stability decides it will not pursue projects with high risks and high returns, but those that have good liquidity and safety.
We see that for a long period ahead, the medium and long-term interest rates tend to be declining. So we’re solving the asset sheet demands through locking up investment returns and covering the costs with returns. Thus we’ve made the fund sustainable.
In respect to the invested projects, we see huge space in investing in infrastructure, and the market has offered us such projects.
In respect to the formation of the fund, we adopted the popular limited partnership mode. Through it being marketized, commercialized and professionalized, we can attract good projects planned by professionals and we can keep it operating in accordance to market rules.
In respect to the fund’s supporting policies, the fund will be positively gaining the support from ministers in charge of macroeconomic planning in the process of investing in the real economy.
We’ll set up a mechanism of communication to better serve the overall national strategy.
The China Insurance Regulatory Commission will offer policies in guiding supervision on solvency and leading the funds to the nation’s major projects.
Those are the measures I suppose will keep the fund balanced in both social and financial aspects, and maintain sustainability.
Kyodo News Agency:
I would like to ask Mr. Liang about the overseas strategy for China’s insurance investment fund. Which fields and projects abroad has the fund invested in? What’s the difference between the fund’s overseas strategy and that of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank or a private equity fund?
China’s insurance investment fund mainly serves the country’s economic strategy. The fund will serve the construction of infrastructure along the Silk Road Economic Belt and the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road by investing in other relevant funds. Thank you.
China Radio International:
I would like to direct my question to Mr. Lin. We have seen the guideline regarding the Internet Plus. Detailed planned actions have included primary, secondary and tertiary industries. As for the general public, everyone is concerned about the potential influence and changes to be ushered in regarding their living and social services. The second question is for Mr. Liang. As for the fund, you have mentioned some possible paradigms. Could you be specific on its future operating and running, as well as the possible targeted programs. You’ve talked about the Beijing-Shanghai high-speed railway program. What kind of experiences and lessons will be applied to the running of the fund? Thank you.
As I have introduced, the guidelines proposed 11 detailed action plans. Those plans include the realm of the economy as well as the domain of social services. One of the actions aims to make Internet Plus benefit the people, and outlines details to address issues of the public’s personal interests. It addresses five areas — public services, civic convenience, medical care, education and health. These are five domains of huge public concern. The action aims at providing online social services of great convenience, efficiency, quality and customization. For instance, in regard to governmental managing services, the Internet Plus offers new vision to the government to improve social dominance, new pathways for the public to participate in social management, and new bridges to shorten the gap between the government and the public. It helps boost the transformation of governmental functions and the innovation of managing paradigms, and remarkably improve the degree of social management.
The guideline offered five detailed measures in regard to governmental management. First, boost innovated supplies of public services and the open sharing of information resources. Second, energetically explore new paradigms of social management services which are conducted in a networking approach and involve the public, promote the transformation of governmental functions and streamline administration and delegate powers. Third, fully utilize the Internet and mobile Internet platforms and quicken the responses of the government’s public management, public services and public policies. Fourth, encourage the government and Internet enterprises to work together and establish a sharing platform of information, and diversify information services offered to the public. Fifth, utilize the big data to promote social management capacity of governing bodies at all levels. In order to modernize the governance system and governance capacity of the country, one key mission is to fully utilize the Internet, which matters in the improvement of services offered by the government.
On the civic convenience part, The guideline prioritizes advantages of the Internet — openness, equality, interaction and high-efficiency. A complete convergence of the Internet and the services facilitating the public will see the serving capacity and beneficiaries remarkably expanded, the services will be more diversified, supplies of the services would be more efficient, and services will be more convenient. First, we should encourage new corporate services models which are all based upon online and offline interactions, such as the Internet-based experience economy, sharing economy, community economy and traveling economy. We should focus on household living and establish a full online service circle. Second, we should offer services such as online registration for social security, online information queries for personal social security rights and interests, and medical insurance clearance. The services above are all tangible measures facilitating the public.
On the medical care part, first, we should boost mobile medical services, offer user-friendly services such as online diagnosis, outpatient reminders, fee payments, diagnostic questions and medicine delivery. It is convenient to utilize the Internet to shorten the queuing time for the patients. Second, we should encourage the establishment of hospitals medical data sharing and exchanging systems, and digitize materials such as medical images, health profiles, patient records and examination reports. For example, we experienced problems when examination reports and CT images taken from one hospital were often not accepted by another hospital. Such problems will be resolved through digitization and Internet information sharing. Another example was due to the lack of top-grade medical resources, we need more excellent doctors. With the introduction of remote distance medical services, medical resources will be configured and optimized, and problems in getting to see a doctor could be addressed.
On health and old-age services, we had four tasks. First, support the application and innovation of health-related intelligent products, and promote the wider adoption of a measurable healthy way of living. We encourage personalized health management services and Internet-based medical services such as extended medical advice and electronic prescriptions. Second, encourage qualified medical examining institutions and medical service agencies to cooperate with Internet companies to develop service models such as DNA examination and disease prevention. Third, establish old-age care home information network platforms based upon the existing Internet resources and private engagement, and provide services such as nursing, foster care, health management and recovery care for senior citizens. Fourth, encourage senior citizens nursing agencies to base their services upon equipment such as portable physical examinations and emergency call monitoring devices, and improve senior citizen nursing. Health and old-age care is a huge market in China, and Internet Plus has a massive potential in this regard.
On the education part, first, we encourage the Internet-based companies to develop new education service paradigms. Education services are not just the job of the education industry but also a potential role for Internet-based companies, which could offer personalized education services. Internet-based companies are encouraged to cooperate with education agencies to develop online, open courses, explore establishing systems of online studying, credit verification and transfer, and expand the reach of high-quality education resources. Second, we encourage schools to integrate digital education resources, explore new models for online education, link education resources between those online and those offline, and explore new pathways for providing public education services.
The five areas above are our key components to boost services and facilitate the public via Internet Plus. You may have noticed that a number of new services have emerged by integrating the online and offline worlds, covering areas such as transportation and household services. This has been widely praised. Some 020 businesses provide online ordering and faster delivery services for consumers and add convenience to our daily needs. Members of the public have given a thumbs-up to them, endorsing them as measures to boost efficiency and reduce spending. That’s why the action guideline proposes to encourage the development of such new services, boost employment and increase incomes. We believe such actions are bringing tangible benefits to the general public. You have already experienced the benefits, and there are more to come.
Thanks for your questions. In my opinion, the engagement of the insurance fund in the Beijing-Shanghai high-speed railway program has indeed helped accumulate valuable experience. However, we’ve also encountered some problems when the insurance fund is serving the construction of the country’s major projects. For example, although some large insurance institutions take part in the project, their capacity may still be not enough, and the industry needs an investment platform. Meanwhile, when we were involved in such a process, we felt that, when tackling a huge infrastructure program, it was challenging for a single company to tackle the coordination issue and the dispersed deployment of the professional managing team. To address such problems, we based our considerations upon the actual situation of the industry and strove for establishing the China Insurance Investment Fund. The organizing paradigm chooses limited partnership. The limited partnership is different from the corporation model. Share subscriptions of all the stakeholders is not required to be in place. After a program is chosen, subscriptions could be made in accordance with the needs of ordinary partners as well as the investing progress of the program. All the funds from insurance companies include costs, and such an approach saves capital costs and reduces pressure for the insurance companies. It also facilitates the role of the professionals. The fund could employ professional talent and build a professionalized team for operations as well as boost the efficiency of utilizing capital.
I think Mr. Lin made a very good point. As ordinary people, we are experiencing changes in our daily lives, such as in education and medical care. I believe that in the era of Internet Plus, a new ecology is being established, featuring an experience-based, sharing and community-focused economy. On the manufacturing industry’s part, progress in public convenience has been made. Why? The past paradigm was mainly B2C. The industry was featuring designs, manufacturing, pricing and marketing, and you went to the stores for commodities such as costumes, furniture, TV sets. You took whatever it produced. In the new context of the experience-based and sharing economy, personalization is rising. You have greater options in daily life, you can take your own courses and studying approaches, including your credit. Young ladies don’t have to worry about two outfits clashing anymore. The manufacturing industry is shifting from C to B, making itself customer-oriented. It is a highlight of the trend, and daily life has new needs for the manufacturing industry, which was once distant. The 3D printing technology allows you to print out commodities that you need, such as toys. You could even produce by yourself at home.
Second, for the small- and medium-sized enterprises, the Internet Plus offers circumstances of lower prices and higher quality and efficiency. What are the opportunities for them? Previously, they were faced with the high cost of financing and informationization. Now, with infrastructure intended for the Internet, crowd sourcing and crowd financing is possible. It is a great chance for them, and it is also a part of this Internet Plus circle.
Third, greater convenience is being offered in your sector and daily life. In the past, we were passive, and now we are personally active because the era of customization has come. The committee is also embracing the “zero-marginal-cost era”. It is a great boost to development of the society, strengthening of consumption capacity and the overall construction of the country. Thank you.
My question goes to Mr. Lin. How can the Internet Plus policy inspire the enthusiasm of small- and-medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and entrepreneurs?
This is a good question, and an important one. We think that the implementation of the Internet Plus policy needs big enterprises to play a role. Four of the world’s 10 largest Internet enterprises are Chinese. These four should play a leading role, but at the same time, the role of the SMEs should never be neglected. We think that the SMEs and the entrepreneurs have always been important forces to push forward the development of the Internet in China. They are also important sources for entrepreneurship in the Internet industry. The SMEs enterprises, entrepreneurs and the large enterprises are all main forces of the Internet Plus policy. It is a key part of the policy to allow the SMEs and entrepreneurs to play their role.
First, the guideline rolls out plans for innovation and entrepreneurship under the Internet Plus policy, including these three points. The first one is to encourage the big Internet enterprises and some telecommunications enterprises to open up their resources to the small-and-micro enterprises and innovation teams. Such services are available, affordable and reliable for the small-sized enterprises, and could build an environment to support innovation and entrepreneurship. Such openness is very important as the SMES have relatively scarce innovative resources. The second one is to support the development of new-type mass entrepreneurship space, promote transformation of the traditional incubators of entrepreneurship, and encourage national innovation platforms to open to enterprises, especially the SMEs. This move would lower costs and facilitate entrepreneurship. The third one is to back the small-and-micro enterprises to become increasingly open by taking advantage of the innovative organization and development mode of the Internet.
Second, a relaxing and active environment for innovation and entrepreneurship will be built in terms of policies. We have stressed several times that a good environment is very important. The guideline states clearly the importance of lowering the threshold for market access, streamlining approval procedures, upgrading financing environment, strengthening personnel training, providing support in terms of finance and taxation, as well as increasing support to SMES and micro-sized enterprises and entrepreneurs. For instance, the document decides to enact “negative lists” for various sectors’ access to the Internet industry, allow various kinds of subjects to enter in an equal manner according to the law, and minimize limits before access. Meanwhile, during-and-after-event regulation will be strengthened. The document also decides to support pilot projects of Internet finance, lower the threshold for innovative Internet enterprises to get listed, and support some Internet enterprises that are still growing but have not made any profits to get listed on the Growth Enterprise Market. I think all these policies would help to build an open and inclusive environment for the SMEs and micro-sized enterprises.
Thirdly, the advantages of the Internet will be used to support the development of the SMEs. The first is to make full use of the e-commerce platform. We will strongly promote e-commerce in the rural areas and cross-border e-commerce. We will provide selling platforms, which are open to the nation and the world, for SMEs. This move could ease restrictions concerning costs and channels. The second is to make full use of big data. After being analyzed, the data could help the SMEs and micro-sized enterprises to better understand the market and gain market information. The growth of these enterprises will be boosted if they link with customers’ needs, explore potential customers and expand development space. The third is to make full use of Internet finance. Just as what Mr. Liang has said, enterprises could hardly develop at a rapid path without the financing support. Internet finance could expand financing channels for the SMEs and micro-sized enterprises, lower the their financing threshold and costs, and better satisfy their needs. We have done some surveys recently. By the end of 2014, China had 128 crowdfunding platforms in 17 provinces and cities to promote the SMEs’ innovation and entrepreneurship. Some leading Internet enterprises in China have utilized Internet finance platforms and big data about credit, and extended loans worth more than 200 billion yuan for over 800,000 small-and-micro-sized enterprises. They have made great contributions to resolving financing problems of the small-and-micro-sized enterprises and entrepreneurs. In future, the Internet Plus policy will give more attention and support to the small-and-micro-sized enterprises.
Just now Mr. Lin and Mr. Huai talked about how “Internet Plus” will change people’s lives. Now many people are using applications that offer chauffeur services. What do you two think of this situation? What do you think of such applications? Thank you.
I think “Internet Plus” will change some of our ideas as well as our ways of living and working. I think it’s important that we be prepared for this. I agree with Mr. Lin that we should update our thoughts when carrying out the “Internet Plus” campaign.
There are many applications offering taxi-hailing services, chauffeur services or car-sharing services. Whether we should encourage the offering of such services through the Internet depends on how much people have accepted it and how useful they have found it to their daily lives. On the positive side, the applications such as those that offer chauffeur services enhance the share of the resources. This way consumers don’t have to own a car or a chauffeur to enjoy a lift. For many industries, making money by sharing resources brings minimal marginal cost. Such chauffeur-service applications are popular because they are convenient, cost effective and more efficient than ever, as they offer an easy and custom-made alternatives to people in large cities, who often have a hard time hailing taxis. These applications have brought a new kind of business. We should understand and reflect on it.
On the other side, introducing the Internet into industries that have many barriers or problems of asymmetric information will bring an impact on these industries. The government, as well as the market, should take on the responsibility to regulate these emerging resource-sharing services, in order to make them safe to users.
The applications offering taxi hailing, car sharing or chauffeur services are popular, but we need to make sure the services are safe. We should be positive about the development of the trend of introducing online services to traditional industries, but we should regulate these services properly. Thank you.
Today’s policy briefing is over. Thank you.