The state-owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission (SASAC) has produced a list of several hundred private-sector firms pretending to be state-owned enterprises (SOEs), in an attempt to make it easier for investors to avoid scams, reports Caixin. The names of the 353 companies on the list were first disclosed by some central government-supervised SOEs, and then compiled by the SASAC. The watchdog called for the public to report to the police as soon as possible if they find any illegal behavior by the companies.
“Those companies and their subsidiaries are fake SOEs and have no affiliation or equity relationship with central government-supervised SOEs, nor any investment, cooperation or business relationship,” SASAC said in a recent statement. “All their behaviors are irrelevant to the central SOEs.”
The issue of “fake SOEs” is a long-standing one. Unscrupulous privately owned companies pose as SOEs by including Chinese characters in their names often linked to government-owned companies, such as “Zhong” (中), “Guo” (国) or “Hua” (华), which can all mean “China.” They also establish opaque ownership structures that conceal their actual controllers.