The Ministry of Foreign Trade and Economic Co-operation has published new rules for direct selling by foreign companies. The rules have been approved by the State Council and come into force on April 1. Under the rules, companies must register with their local commercial bureaux and open retail outlets before they can engage in direct selling. Agents must be employed directly by the company and can only be paid in commission for product sales and not for introducing new customers. In addition, companies are banned from making sales agents buy products or pay other fees.
Avon Products, Amway and Mary Kay all have direct selling operations in China.