Date
17 December 2017
Artit from Jinan Acrobatics Troupe of China prepares backstage before his performance in the "History" show at the Arlette Gruss Circus in Bordeaux

The Big Picture: CULTURAL INDUSTRY

China sees the cultural industry as a new growth area for the economy and a vital tool to enhance the nation’s soft power. Authorities had said earlier that they expect the sector’s output to account for about 5 percent of the gross domestic product by 2016, up from less than 2.8 percent in 2010.

In a bid to achieve the national goals, the State Council made a fresh pledge this month to enhance support for the industry and help boost export of cultural products.

The government will encourage financial institutions to offer loan and fund-raising services to cultural industry players and support key cultural product exporters in corporate bond issuances, the cabinet said in a statement posted on the government website Monday. 

Authorities will regularly release a catalog that lists out the major cultural product exporters and the nation’s important cultural projects, said the statement which was dated March 3. Projects that can help spread the Chinese culture and the nation’s modern image will enjoy more support from the government, it said.

The country will also encourage mergers and acquisitions that will help establish some distribution channels for its cultural products, it said. By 2020, China should have some cultural products that are competitive in the global markets and can help boost the nation’s soft power and domestic consumption. 

Wang Qishan {王岐山}, one of the seven standing members of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee’s politburo, said on March 5 at a sub-meeting of the National People’s Congress that officials should ponder why a Korean drama such as “My Love From the Star” and K-pop singer Psy’s song “Gangnam Style” were such big hits. 

Wang said China can learn from the Korean cultural industry, which has extended its influence to audiences in the United States and Europe.

The success of South Korean drama and pop stars is definitely a role model for China. However, what the country needs is a politically open and free environment for cultural workers, as well as a good system to protect intellectual property, observers say. Without these, it will be difficult for the nation to achieve its objectives. 

Property price-cut trend spreads to Beijing, Guangzhou

Property developers have been cutting prices in more cities, the latest being Beijing and Guangzhou, China Securities Journal reported Tuesday. The trend began in Hangzhou and Nanjing, reflecting over-investment, oversupply and weak sales, the report said. This could result in tighter funding for developers and exacerbate bad loans, potentially leading to systemic risk. Home prices will remain volatile even if the government refrains from further curbs and a crash of the property market cannot be ruled out in certain parts of the country, observers said.

Private-equity firms win licenses

Fifty private-equity companies have won licenses to conduct business in investment securities, equities and ventures, China Securities Journal reported Tuesday. The licenses were awarded by the Asset Management Association of China, a self-regulated body representing the country’s mutual funds industry. The companies have been encouraged to offer multi-faceted global services, the report said, citing Zhang Yujun, assistant chairman of the China Securities Regulatory Commission.

– Contact HKEJ at [email protected]

JP/RC

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