Private Sector Development in China

Small and medium-sized enterprises (SME) are the main engine driving economic development in most countries. In China, the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) is in charge of promoting their development within the strategic five-year plans. The German Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) has been supporting NDRC through the Sino-German SME Promotion Program from 2000 to 2007. German Technical Development Co. (GTZ) and SEQUA Foundation have cooperated closely in implementing the program in China. Specific activities focused on Anhui Province, one of the pilot regions for SME development policies.

One of the main program objectives was to improve conditions for an equal dialog between the private business community and the government and party administration. Institution building of business membership organizations (BMO) who politically represent the private sector and provide adequate services, were given special attention. Further key topics were the development of industry clusters, business start-up training, and expert advice to the goverment and legislative bodies in improving the legal and administrative framework for SME development.