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Lack of Trust Stifles Online Trade
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A lack of confidence is holding back China's e-commerce development according to survey findings released yesterday.

The survey, sponsored by the China Electronic Commerce Association (CECA), identifies 36.3 percent of Chinese companies with experience in online trading as not trusting e-commerce. For consumers the figure stands at 13.3 percent. Rampant fraud led 23.5 percent of Chinese companies to list trustworthiness as their biggest concern about online trading.

An earlier report by the China Internet Network Information Center found 71.1 percent of Chinese Internet users, who'd yet to buy or sell something online, were wary of fraud.

"A lack of mutual trust between sellers and buyers has become the biggest bottleneck to the rapid growth of e-commerce in China," said Zhao Yinhu, vice-president of CECA at the opening in Beijing yesterday of the Ninth China International E-commerce Conference.

In response to the concerns Chinese e-commerce companies have launched evaluation schemes to rate sellers' reputations in online commerce.

Before starting online transactions CECA's survey found that 64.2 percent of Chinese consumers and 71.1 percent of enterprises check the sellers' record of previous buyers' feedback.  

However, despite the increasing use of evaluation schemes 40.3 percent of enterprise purchasers still fail to give feedback to sellers after completing transactions, Zhao said. "If such a practice continues an effective evaluation mechanism will hardly be established," observed Zhao.

Inadequate security for online payments and ineffective laws and regulations had also led a large number of consumers and enterprises to shun online commerce, said Zhao.

(China Daily September 5, 2006)

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