Xi’s mea­sures bol­ster­ing con­fi­dence

Pri­vate en­trepreneurs bullish on the call to step up in­no­va­tion ef­forts

China Daily (Latin America Weekly) - - Business - By MA SI, CHENG YU and LIU YUKUN

Top en­trepreneurs from China have re­sponded pos­i­tively to Pres­i­dent Xi Jin­ping’s em­pha­sis on pro­vid­ing more sup­port to pri­vate en­ter­prises, and said they will step up ef­forts to boost in­no­va­tion and take the ini­tia­tive to shore up eco­nomic growth.

Lu Wei­d­ing, CEO of Wanx­i­ang Group, a multi­bil­lion dol­lar au­to­mo­tive group, said he was re­as­sured by Pres­i­dent Xi’s speech about more sup­port to pri­vate firms. “The top lead­er­ship gave an en­light­en­ing pre­scrip­tion to the dif­fi­cul­ties we are fac­ing. As rep­re­sen­ta­tives of the new gen­er­a­tion of en­trepreneurs, we will strengthen our in­no­va­tion ca­pa­bil­i­ties and core com­pet­i­tive­ness to be stronger, and hope to gain a lead in global com­pe­ti­tion,” Lu said.

The com­ments came af­ter Xi, also gen­eral sec­re­tary of the Com­mu­nist Party of China Cen­tral Com­mit­tee, said the pri­vate econ­omy is an es­sen­tial el­e­ment of China’s eco­nomic sys­tem, and that “pri­vate en­ter­prises and pri­vate en­trepreneurs be­long to our own fam­ily”.

Xi in­tro­duced six mea­sures, in­clud­ing eas­ing com­pa­nies’ tax bur­den, re­solv­ing pri­vate com­pa­nies’ dif­fi­cul­ties in bor­row­ing money, build­ing a fairer en­vi­ron­ment for com­pe­ti­tion, and pro­tect­ing the safety of pri­vate en­ter­prises and their wealth.

Lei Jun, founder and CEO of smart­phone maker Xiaomi Corp, said he was in­spired by Xi’s speech, which gave im­por­tant di­rec­tions for the de­vel­op­ment of pri­vate busi­nesses.

“I am full of en­thu­si­asm and con­fi­dent in the fu­ture de­vel­op­ment of the pri­vate econ­omy,” Lei said.

Ac­cord­ing to Lei, the gov­ern­ment has been striv­ing to cut taxes and fees, and to re­duce bank loan in­ter­est rates for non-pub­lic en­ter­prises. Such a sound en­vi­ron­ment in­spires en­trepreneurs to fo­cus on in­no­va­tion.

“The pur­pose of pri­vate en­trepreneurs to do busi­ness is not for per­sonal in­ter­ests. The value pri­vate busi­nesses create be­longs to the whole of so­ci­ety, in­clud­ing em­ploy­ees as well as con­sumers. There­fore, en­trepreneurs must have a clear sense of mis­sion to con­trib­ute to so­cial progress,” Lei said.

Over the past 40 years, the pri­vate econ­omy has be­come an in­dis­pens­able force be­hind China’s de­vel­op­ment, by be­ing the ma­jor con­trib­u­tor to job cre­ation, tech­no­log­i­cal in­no­va­tion and an im­por­tant source of tax rev­enue.

On top of ac­count­ing for more than half of the coun­try’s fis­cal rev­enue, China’s pri­vate en­ter­prises are cur­rently re­spon­si­ble for over 60 per­cent of fixed-as­set in­vest­ment, more than 70 per­cent of in­no­va­tion and over 80 per­cent of ur­ban em­ploy­ment, ac­cord­ing to Feng Liguo, a re­searcher at the China Min­sheng Bank Re­search In­sti­tute.

Zhang Xin, chair­man of TBEA Co Ltd, a ma­jor en­ergy equip­ment maker in China, said Xi’s speech has boosted the com­pany’s con­fi­dence in pro­mot­ing high-qual­ity de­vel­op­ment and strength­en­ing its over­seas co­op­er­a­tion. The com­pany cur­rently has co­op­er­a­tion pro­jects in In­dia, Kyr­gyzs­tan and sev­eral other coun­tries.

“Tack­ling tech­ni­cal is­sues and rais­ing more fund­ing are ma­jor chal­lenges for small and medium-sized en­ter­prises. We will of­fer more tech­ni­cal and fi­nan­cial sup­port to help tide them over the tem­po­rary hard­ships,” Zhang said.

Ac­cord­ing to him, as­sur­ances from the top lead­er­ship have made the com­pany more aware of the im­por­tance of poverty al­le­vi­a­tion. It will of­fer more ed­u­ca­tional re­sources and create more job op­por­tu­ni­ties to res­i­dents in Xin­jiang, he said.

Con­tact the writ­ers at masi@chi­nadaily.com.cn

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