Business activity at small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in China fell again during the final quarter of 2018, as Beijing struggles to revive a key sector of the economy, Caixin reports.
The Small and Medium Enterprises Development Index (SMEDI), an industry survey released by the Chinese government in partnership with the country’s official SME association, produced a score of 93.0 for the last three months of 2018, indicating that SMEs are still finding times tough.
This was the 30th consecutive quarter that the index came in below the benchmark score of 100. The score of 93.0 was level with the third quarter, indicating that the sector has stabilized following two previous quarters of accelerating contraction.
However, Beijing would have been hoping for a better result after a landmark speech by President Xi Jinping in support of private enterprise and a slew of government policies designed to channel funding to SMEs and improve the policy environment for the private sector.