China's large industrial enterprises saw profits fall 22.9 percent in the first five months over the same period last year, the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) said Friday.
Total profits of large enterprises, with revenues more than 5 million yuan (US$732,000), stood at 850.2 billion yuan during the January-May period.
Although the shrinking profits reflected the global economic downturn, the decline was 14.4 percentage points lower than that in the first two months.
State-owned and state-controlled businesses realized profits of 246.7 billion yuan, down 41.5 percent over the same period last year. Profits of listed companies dropped 24.1 percent to 454.3 billion yuan.
Private enterprises saw total profits rise 2.4 percent year-on-year to 230.3 billion yuan.
Profits of the electricity, coal and building materials sectors rose from 4.2 to 14.6 percent.
However, the oil and natural gas, steel and iron, and chemical industries saw profits fall from 25.4 to 97.2 percent.
"The figures also reflect weak business operations of these industrial enterprises," said Zhuang Jian, senior economist with the Asian Development Bank in Beijing. "The government should consider how to boost the private sector to drive the domestic economy."
(Xinhua News Agency June 26, 2009)