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Number of Central SOEs to Be Halved
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A new round of integration of big state-owned enterprises (SOEs) will be started at the end of 2007. According to the plan of State-owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission (SASAC), there will be only 80 to 100 such enterprises left when the integration is completed before the end of 2008.

Currently, SASAC is working hard to make specific plans for the integration, and related researches are being conducted in the enterprises.

SASAC always takes enhancing the competitiveness of central enterprises as one of its most important responsibilities. 76 central enterprises of 38 groups have already been integrated since 2003 when SASAC was founded. Currently there are only 157 central enterprises, while the figure in 2003 was 196. From 2004 to 2006, 36 central enterprises were integrated.

The ultimate goal of SASAC is to pool the resources of current central enterprises to generate 30 to 50 international enterprises by 2010, and the total number of central enterprises will be cut to 80 -100. That is to say, 57 enterprises will be integrated in the next 3 years or 19 enterprises every year. However, in the first 4 months of 2007, only 2 central enterprises were integrated, which aroused general public's doubt about the efficiency of SASAC.

"In fact, the real job is not yet started, and we are working on it," said Wang Zhigang, the head of the Department of Reform and Development of SASAC.

(China News Service June 17, 2007)

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