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Exclusive interview: Li Yizhong on China's SOE reforms

03-10-2014 16:29 BJT Special Report: People Gallary |
Special Report: 2014 NPC & CPPCC Sessions |

Chinese President Xi Jinping spoke about pushing forward SOE reform at the ongoing sessions. SOE reform is key to China moving towards a market-driven economy and boosting the private sector.

"President Xi Jinping talked about SOE reforms when joining the discussions of the Anhui Delegation. He warns that SOE reform should not be used as an opportunity for some people to make quick profits. The key of reform is open and transparent. In the key reform plan revealed at the 3rd plenum last winter, the government said China will actively develop a mixed ownership economy, allowing more SOEs and other firms to develop into mixed-ownership companies.

President Xi said the basic framework has been established, the key is the implementation of the detailed policies. On what that entails I interviewed Li Yizhong, former Minister of Industry and Information Technology. He shares the paths to developing mix-shareholding, and on how to open state-dominated oil and telecom industries," said CCTV reporter Guan Xin.

Li Yizhong, former Minister of Industry and Information Technology

"Developing mixed-ownership of state and non-state capital should benefit both sides. It is a two-way thing. For state-owned companies, now most of them have already diversified their ownership, or are even listed on stock market. But there is still more to do. Now many state companies are 70% owned by the state. It still has significant room to be lowered to 51%, still a controlling stake. It should introduce more private capital, social capital. It will benefit SOEs by bringing in their capital, technology, management, and the market. On the other hand, private companies may also bring in state capital and talents. In practice, companies should play the leading role under the market mechanism," said Li Yizhong, CPPCC member, former Minister of Industry and Information Technology.

"Monopolized industries usually have a very long industrial chain. Some businesses, like oil refining, processing, retail, are not monopolized. Since those companies’ listings, they have attracted lots of private and foreign investments. Now they’re looking to attract more. So is the telecoms sector. The basic business is monopolistic, while value-added business is being opened up. The government’s work report has clearly pointed out, reform on the monopolistic sectors will focus on opening up the competitive business, while franchising the non-competitive one.

The government is encouraging private capital to invest in areas such as banking, oil, electricity, railway, telecom, resources and utilities, and to open competitive operations of state-owned sector in more areas to encourage full participation of private capital. In a first move, China’s top oil refiner Sinopec announced in mid-February that it would bring in private capital to jointly market and sell its oil products," Li also said.

Editor:James |Source:

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