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Serving SMEs: Not Take Part for the Whole Any Longer

Date: 2016-05-13

Guo Tianyong from Central University of Finance and Economics

Small and micro-sized enterprises (SMEs) play an increasingly important role in China’s economic growth and structural transformation. However, with a comprehensive, timely and authoritative statistical indicator dedicated to revealing how SMEs operate yet to be introduced, regulators, practitioners or researchers all tend to take a part for the whole while talking about SMEs.

Economic Daily-PSBC Small and Micro-sized Enterprise Operating Index” (hereinafter referred to as “SMEOI”) filled China’s gap in SME information statistics to a certain extent. Compared with the existing major economic indicators of HSBC PMI and CFLP PMI, PSBC’s index has its unique advantages. It relies on the Bank’s huge system of service outlets more than 70% of which are distributed in counties or places at lower levels. It exclusively takes SMEs as the object of data collection. A total of 2500 representative samples from millions of SMEs cover six regions and seven industries, located at hundreds of counties and townships, which doubtlessly improves the reliability and persuasion of the sampling. At the same time, in the design of specific index mechanism and release frequency, the index bases its authority on rigorous, scientific, authentic and accurate data collection, so as to predict and reflect the status and growth trend of China’s SMEs and thus provide useful reference for industry authorities in their decision-making process.

PSBC takes serving agriculture-related business, SMEs and people’s livelihood as its market positioning. It has long attached great importance to the financial work concerning SMEs, so the release of SMEOI is an inevitable requirement of its own practice in inclusive finance and more importantly it’s of practical significance to the realization of inclusive finance in China. A comprehensive, timely and authoritative statistical index that reflects how SMEs operate plays a great role in effectively guiding the flow of social capital, reducing the financing cost of SMEs and enhance the financing accessibility for them to a certain extent, thus promoting the development of real economy and the stable growth of employment. From a broader perspective, SMEs, small in asset size and poor in risk resilience, are more vulnerable to macroeconomic fluctuations. But they can be regarded as the front-end antenna of the macroeconomic operation, and based on this, the index has its social value in indirectly, predictably reflecting the macroeconomic operation, and provides a new perspective for measuring the macro economy. Therefore, it is fair to believe that the practical benefits of the index will be constantly released in the future.