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Country Ushers in Credit System for Small Firms

China will give priority to the establishment of a credit system for small and medium-sized businesses (SMB), said Li Rongrong, head of the State Economic and Trade Commission, in Beijing on Tuesday.

As part of the measures in this regard, a website on SMB information (www.chinasmb.gov.cn) has been launched, and a list of 100 SMBs with good credibility have been posted on the website Li said at a press conference.

Also posted on the website are the lists of 20 SMBs that have failed to pass a quality examination, 4,964 small oil refineries, cement plants, glass factories, thermal power plants and steel mills that will be shut down, and 104 agencies that guarantee the credibility of SMBs.

The publication of the four lists is meant to improve SMBs' awareness of credit, encourage those who are trustworthy, and punish those who are not reliable, Li said.

To promote the building of the credit system for SMBs, Li's commission and nine other ministries issued in April this year a document on strengthening the management of SMBs' credit.

As of the end of June, there were 260 credit guarantee agencies in 30 Chinese provinces, and they had raised funds totaling 7.6 billion yuan (US$916 million), which is enough for guaranteeing SMBs to get 40 billion to 50 billion yuan (US$4.82-6.02 billion) in loans, according to Li.

China now has more than 8 million SMBs, accounting for 99 percent of the total number of enterprises in the country.

(Xinhua News Agency 08/08/2001)

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