Cut to levied charges will ease company costs
The State Council decided at an executive meeting on April 3 to cut government-levied charges and operating service charges to reduce the burden on businesses and individuals.
According to a decision at the meeting, chaired by Premier Li Keqiang, charges on real estate registration will be cut or canceled from July 1. Fee reductions for patent applications will also be expanded, coupled with measures to cut the annual fees of patents.
According to a statement released after the meeting, charges for passports, the registration of certain trademarks, radio frequency use and the Internet of Vehicles will be further reduced. The charges for ownership registration for real estate, such as garage and parking spots, will be reduced from 550 yuan ($82) to 80 yuan. The registration fee for continued use of trademarks will also go down from 1,000 to 500 yuan.
As part of efforts to reduce corporate burdens, payments by airline companies to the civil aviation development fund, as well as contributions by electricity users to the national major water conservancy construction fund, will be halved.
Enterprises and public institutions administered by the central government will have their contributions to the national cultural programs cut by half, effective until the end of 2024. Local authorities are also encouraged to apply similar policies for such businesses and institutions administered at local levels.
Mobile internet service rates and broadband service rates for small and medium-sized enterprises will be reduced by about 180 billion yuan this year. The average electricity rates for general industrial and commercial businesses and prices for rail freight transport will be cut, with port charges set to be cut or merged. The charge for citizen ID information certification will be revoked, the statement said.
The above measures are expected to lighten the fee burden on companies and individuals by more than 300 billion yuan this year after their full implementation, the statement said.
Pilot program will help reduce drug concerns
China will further move forward with a pilot program for the pooled procurement of pharmaceuticals and improve capacities to cope with a shortage of drugs, according to a decision from the State Council executive meeting on April 3.
According to a statement released after the meeting, the pilot program for pooled procurement of pharmaceuticals will be further refined, with measures to step up the quality supervision and supply of drugs selected in the procurement. The experience from the pilot program will be summarized in a timely manner as a pre-step for nationwide promotion.
The country launched a pilot program in March for pooled procurement of pharmaceuticals in 11 cities to bring about more affordable prices of key medicines. As part of the program, healthcare security authorities will conduct pooled procurement of drugs based on the amount required at public medical institutions in targeted regions.
The meeting also highlighted the importance of ensuring the supply of basic drugs and drugs for emergency rescue purposes. The monitoring and early warning mechanism will be refined, and more will be done to ensure the supply of drugs that are in shortage or irreplaceable. Unreasonable price hikes of drugs that are commonly used or in urgent demand will be prevented.
The medical aid mechanism will be further optimized, and more measures, including direct aid or offering subsidies to poor individuals in medical insurance, will improve the sense of gain among the public, the statement said.