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Reforms to cut paperwork for start-ups around the corner

Updated: Aug 25,2016 7:55 AM Daily

An administrative reform aimed at cutting paperwork for startup businesses will be launched across China soon, according to a story from Economic Daily.

On Aug 23, a preparatory meeting for these reforms was held by several State Council departments.

According to the official plan issued on July 5, the five certificates that new companies should apply for — including tax, quality supervision, social insurance, statistics, and market supervision — will be cut to just one business certificate starting Oct 1.

Zhang Mao, head of the State Administration for Industry and Commerce, China’s market supervision bureau, said at the meeting that reforms will expedite starting a company while cutting administrative and business costs.

Since 2015, pilot reform programs have been tested in Zhejiang and Hunan provinces.

In Zhejiang, start-ups just need to submit eight files for the certificate, instead of the previous requirement of 35 files for the five certificates. Approval time has been reduced to one or two days.

In South China’s Hunan province, 96,000 companies have been started since the reforms were enacted, up 21.1 percent from the previous year and creating 241,000 jobs.

“It has helped ease current employment pressures,” said Li Jindong, head of the Administration for Industry and Commerce in Hunan province.

According to Zhang Mao, in New Zealand, registering a company has only one step and takes about half a day, and in Singapore the approval time is 2.5 days with three steps. There is still space for China to cut red tape, he said.

Jia Nan, deputy head of the National Statistics Bureau, said there are still some regulations that need adjustment so that the reforms can be launched smoothly.

“Regulations that do not fit the reforms exist in 19 provinces,” he said.

“Reform should be based on rule of law,” said Gan Zangchun, deputy head of the Legislative Affairs Office of the State Council. He urged local authorities to examine and polish the related regulations, ensuring that the business certificate can be recognized by different departments and regions.