Several ministry-level departments, including those for human resources and social security, civil affairs, and finance, have responded recently to issues of public concern.
Employment survey to help job seekers
The Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security has launched an online survey in an effort to improve services to job seekers.
In a notice posted on its website on Feb 2, the ministry invited members of the public to fill in an employment questionnaire and give it a better understanding of the employment situation after the Feb 4-10 Spring Festival holiday.
The survey is open to the public until Feb 20. Respondents can access the questionnaire by scanning a QR code on the screen of their cellphones or logging on to the ministry’s website.
The ministry also surveyed employers and job-seekers last year to find out more about employment needs after Spring Festival.
Ministry urges lower organization fees
The Ministry of Civil Affairs has urged national-level industrial organizations and chambers of commerce to lower membership fees and refrain from imposing unreasonable charges to reduce the burden on businesses.
The ministry said in a statement on Feb 3 that it will conduct the annual examination of national-level social organizations, and such organizations are also expected to report fee adjustments in their annual reports.
The lowering of membership fees will be an important criteria for the ministry in evaluating national organizations. Other criteria include whether the organizations have imposed charges against regulations or been found to have misused funds. Those who fail the evaluations will be disqualified, the ministry said.
Social organizations found to be engaged in activities that harm national reunification, national security, ethnic unity or jeopardize the national interest will also be disqualified and punished according to law, the ministry said.
A third-party will conduct random on-site verification of information submitted, it added.
Private kindergartens ‘still supported’
The Ministry of Education said on Feb 2 that it will continue to boost support for private kindergartens and encourage them to provide inclusive services.
The ministry said media reports that the country will no longer allow the development of private kindergartens were misleading, and it will continue to encourage investment in kindergartens.
As of 2017, about 63 percent of kindergartens nationwide were run by private entities, among which 43 percent were deemed to be providing inclusive services, the ministry said.
It added that it will encourage more private kindergartens to provide inclusive services. In the meantime, private kindergartens will be allowed to remain profit-oriented to meet public demand.
Tax benefit to boost small businesses
Chinese authorities have decided to grant a three-year tax benefit to encourage self-employment and hiring by small businesses.
The decision was jointly announced on Feb 2 by the Ministry of Finance, State Taxation Administration and two other government departments.
According to the decision, people in need who start a business can have 12,000 yuan ($1,790) a year deducted from their families’ annual taxes over three years.
The preferential treatment will target four groups: those registered as members of poverty-stricken groups; people who have been jobless for more than half a year; those living on subsistence allowances; and recent graduates from higher education institutions.
Businesses that have hired individuals from the four groups and paid social insurance for them can also enjoy tax deductions of 6,000 yuan per person a year for three years.
Local governments at the provincial level can lift the tax relief by 30 percent at most, according to local conditions.