China to deepen reform of government functions, raise service capacity for businesses, public

Photo taken on March 4, 2020 shows the skyscrapers of the Central Business District (CBD) in Beijing, capital of China. (Xinhua/Ju Huanzong)

  Photo taken on March 4, 2020 shows the skyscrapers of the Central Business District (CBD) in Beijing, capital of China. (Xinhua/Ju Huanzong)

BEIJING, Dec. 15 (Xinhua) — China will optimize government service hotlines, improve the efficiency and capacity of government services for businesses and individuals, and implement unified registration for pledge of movable property and rights to facilitate pledge financing for businesses, the State Council executive meeting chaired by Premier Li Keqiang decided on Monday.

Government service hotline is directly oriented to businesses and the public, and serves as an important channel to report problems, make suggestions, facilitate government decision-making and help solve public service issues. It has played a positive role in addressing pressing concerns for enterprises and people in recent years.

Attendees at the Monday meeting decided that going forward, regarding the large numbers of government service hotlines and inconvenience in accessing services, service hotlines will be optimized in keeping with the requirements of deepening reform of government functions.

Local governments, especially governments at county and city levels, should fulfill due responsibilities for non-emergency hotlines related to enterprises and people, according to the meeting.

Service hotlines set up by governments at local levels and those established by relevant departments of the State Council and operated at the local levels shall be merged, wherever possible, into one unified number, to the convenience of the people. This embodies services at a single window. Relevant departments of the State Council shall guide localities in optimizing hotlines, the meeting decided.

Optimized hotlines shall be convenient for people to access. Procedures and resource allocation should be refined, and technical support should be strengthened to better align hotline operations with related handling services. A sound mechanism to efficiently deal with complaints, as well as monitoring and accountability mechanisms, shall be established to see that problems and reasonable demands raised by businesses and people are properly handled in a timely manner, and to ensure that government service hotlines can be swiftly accessed, public concerns be more accurately referred to relevant departments and things get done efficiently, it said.

“We have been working hard to transform government functions and make it easier for businesses and the people to get things done,” Li said.

“Regarding hotline operation and case handling, multi-level targeted approaches shall be adopted, and due responsibilities specified, with high attention paid to localities at city and county levels. Guidance from relevant departments shall be stepped up,” he said.

It was decided at the meeting that unified registration for pledge of movable property and rights will be implemented nationwide starting Jan. 1, 2021, to further improve business environment and facilitate the financial sector to better serve the real economy, micro, small and medium-sized enterprises in particular.

In recent years, pilot programs of unified registration for pledge of movable property and rights have been carried out in certain provinces and cities, to facilitate enterprises’ pledge financing. Privately-owned firms and micro, small, and medium-sized enterprises accounted for more than 95 percent of new pledge registration, and their amount of financing took up over 80 percent.

Registration responsibility for pledge of production equipment, raw materials, semi-finished products, and product mortgages previously undertaken by the State Administration for Market Regulation, and registration responsibility for pledge of accounts receivables, deposits, financial leases, as well as factoring by the People’s Bank of China, will all be assumed by the latter. Internet-based services will be provided 24/7.

Those that have already completed registration for pledge of movable property and rights will not be required for re-registration. Relevant departments shall properly handle follow-up work such as data transfer of inventory information. New registrations shall be applied by relevant parties through the unified registration and notification system, and they will be held accountable for the authenticity, completeness and legality of the application. Registration departments will not conduct substantive review of the registration contents.

The unified registration system is conducive for financial institutions to get a full picture of movable property and rights information and enhance their readiness to provide pledge financing to enterprises.

“Unified registration for pledge of movable property and rights requires the financial system to strengthen and improve management services for the enterprises, and will play a positive role in easing the burden on small and medium-sized enterprises, and in facilitating pledge financing. The financial system must make great efforts to improve services,” Li said.

The meeting also adopted draft revisions of the Regulation on Business Name Registration and Administration, to refine basic norms and put in place an application system for corporate names where applicants can choose a corporate name that meets the requirements and pledge to bear legal responsibilities for any name infringements.

Both deregulation and oversight will be stepped up. Registration departments shall enhance compliance oversight, and refuse to register or correct the corporate names inconsistent with the requirements. Disputes over corporate names may be settled through lawsuits or mediated or decided by registration departments.

“Corporate name registration shall facilitate fair competition and independent business operations within the confines of the law,” Li said.

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