(Yicai Global) March 3 -- The tax and social insurance measures China unveiled in the wake of the novel coronavirus epidemic are expected to ease the burden on companies by more than CNY510 billion (USD73.1 billion) this year, according to a senior finance ministry official.
Local governments can cut businesses' contributions to employee medical insurance while ensuring the long-term sustainability of the medical healthcare insurance fund, Fu Jinling, head of the ministry's department for social security, told a press conference in Beijing today.
Finance departments at all levels had arranged CNY108.75 billion for epidemic control and prevention as of yesterday, he said, adding that medical expense-related issues will not delay the treatment of those infected thanks to relatively ample medical funds.
The central government has also unveiled polices to subsidize interest payments, with the subsidies based on 50 percent of the interest rate on loans to key firms to ensure that their real financing costs are no more than 1.6 percent.
To stabilize employment, the ministry has not only increased subsidies for vocational training but also actively promoted online skills training. Small- and medium-sized firms that provide training during the stoppage and recovery period amid the epidemic are also eligible for subsidies in accordance with relevant rules.
Since the outbreak, the Chinese government has unveiled three tax relief policies to strengthen the fight against the epidemic and help firms resume operations and production.
China reported another 125 confirmed Covid-19 virus cases and 31 deaths yesterday, Mi Feng, a spokesperson for the National Health Commission, said at the same press conference. But the situation is improving, he added.
Editor: Peter Thomas