SCIO press briefing on centrally administered state-owned enterprises' support for epidemic prevention and control

A press conference was held Tuesday morning to shine light on measures taken by centrally administered state-owned enterprises (SOEs) to support the fight against the COVID-19 epidemic.

China SCIO February 20, 2020


Research and development of drugs and vaccines for COVID-19 is tremendously important to epidemic prevention and control and has attracted wide attention. How will SASAC coordinate centrally administered medical SOEs on strengthening the research and development of vaccines and drugs? Thank you.

Zhao Shitang:

Thank you for your question. Some centrally administered SOEs including Sinopharm, China Resources Group and China General Technology are now robustly expanding research of effective drugs to treat COVID-19 in accordance with relevant work deployments, and promising progress has already been made.

First, as Mr. Ren just mentioned, CNBG, a subsidiary of Sinopharm, has successfully developed nucleic acid test kits, which were quickly provided to the National Center for Disease Control and Prevention, Hubei Provincial Center for Disease Control and Prevention, and other provincial and municipal disease control and prevention centers to conduct frontline virus detection tests. Over a million packs have already been produced, and they have played a very important role in infection screening and virus detection and isolation.

Second, after conducting in-depth research and rigorous tests, CNBG introduced a therapy for severely ill patients involving introducing plasma from recovered patients. The Ministry of Science and Technology quickly approved the project, and thanks to strong support from the National Health Commission, the therapy has been successfully used to treat 10 severely ill patients. So far, the outcomes have been promising.

Third, vaccine research and development work has been accelerated in Wuhan, Beijing and other places. Virus cultivation for an inactivated vaccine is already underway. Development of a genetically engineered vaccine for the virus has already completed the gene sequence synthesis, and other relevant work is also progressing.

Fourth, China Meheco Co., Ltd., a subsidiary of China General Technology, has increased efforts to resume production of chloroquine phosphate, an antimalarial drug that has shown certain curative effects for COVID-19, to ensure market supply.

In general, SASAC and centrally administered medical SOEs have established a set of coordination mechanisms. Next, under the leadership of the Joint Prevention and Control Mechanism of the State Council, SASAC will continue to support and urge relevant enterprises to improve development and production efforts for effective drugs and vaccines as it ensures devotion of the full strength of state-owned enterprises to the people’s war against the epidemic across the board. Thank you.


I have two questions. Have centrally administered SOEs provided any support for keeping the employment market and salary levels stable? Will SASAC take new measures to help private enterprises? Thank you.

Xia Qingfeng:

Let me first answer the question about employment. Since most centrally administered SOEs had already started recruiting 2020 college graduates before the Chinese New Year, many will not be affected much by the outbreak of the epidemic in that realm. Companies that need to carry out or continue recruiting in springtime will follow relevant regulations on epidemic prevention and control, and take active countermeasures according to real conditions to ensure smooth progress of recruitment work. We have already seen some positive developments in this area. For example, China Communication Construction Group introduced an online recruitment system, and China International Intellectech Co., Ltd. (CIIC), a state-owned company specializing in human resources services, started providing free remote video interviews as needed.

SASAC will pay close attention to the progress of centrally administered SOEs in recruiting college graduates. Following preset employment arrangements, we will actively promote follow-up work with relevant departments by all means, so as to make contributions to stabilizing employment.

On the question about support for SMEs, I don’t have anything to add to what Mr. Peng Huagang has already outlined. Thank you.

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