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China to cut taxes and enhance financial service to support micro firms

Updated: May 4,2018 1:51 PM     CGTN

Businesses that are just starting out usually face difficulties such as first-round financing and operation costs. Now, China is rolling out new policies that will save money for the country’s small enterprises.

Under these policies, taxes will be reduced, and financial institutions will be able to provide more products and services to startups.

Seven new tax policies are expected to save the businesses a total of 60 billion yuan ($9.45 billion) per year, vice finance minister Cheng Lihua said at a news conference on May 3.

Cheng said the move is to promote employment growth, because employment determines living standards.

Another goal is to encourage scientific and technological innovation, as they are the driving forces of development, according to Cheng.

The move follows a 400-billion-yuan tax cut package, which was decided at a State Council executive meeting in March.

In addition, commercial banks have been asked to weigh more of their loans toward small and micro-businesses, said Wang Zhaoxing, vice-chairman of China’s top banking and insurance regulator, at the news conference.

He added that qualified banking institutions are encouraged to issue financial bonds to these businesses in expanding their financing channels.

Wang said more efforts will be made to accelerate products and services that support startups, like lines of credit.

Wang believes that financing small and micro-enterprises is a problem all over the world; therefore, effective efforts should be made to solve the problem. “Reducing the threshold of loans to those micro firms will encourage banks to lend money to them,” he said.

Total outstanding loans to small and micro-businesses stood at 31.7 trillion yuan by the end of the first quarter this year, up 1.02 trillion yuan from the end of 2017, official data showed.

China is speeding up reforms in the financial sector and focusing on solving the problem of small and micro-enterprises finding it tough and expensive to access financing, according to this year’s government work report.

The reform will boost the development of new industries and business models.