CSR 2019: Challenges to SOE Mixed Ownership Reform in China – A Case Study

By Dominic Chiu

Introduction

The reform of state-owned enterprises (SOEs) in China is crucial for sustaining the country’s economic growth through increased productivity and innovation. In 2013, China’s state sector owned assets equivalent to 145 percent of China’s GDP, the highest ratio in the world and almost double that of the runner-up, India.[i] State sector profitability has been consistently lower than that of the private sector and of foreign funded businesses. Chart 1 in the appendix shows that the state sector has consistently had the lowest rate of return on assets in the industrial sector for the past 15 years. Chart 2 also shows that SOEs have the highest number of loss-makers as a share of the total number of enterprises in its ownership category.2 This mismatch between the state sector’s significant share of assets and consistently low profitability demonstrates one of the most challenging problems that China’s economy faces today: an inefficient state sector. This paper aims to highlight three problems in the Chinese government’s ongoing efforts to reform SOEs through a mixed ownership scheme. First, private investors’ influence in SOEs will be limited by their minority stake; second, a more eclectic board composition makes it harder to reach consensus on corporate decisions; and third, ownership is becoming less important due to party and government influence from outside the corporate board. This paper examines these three problems through a case study of the government’s decision to welcome private actors to invest in China Unicom, one of the country’s largest telecommunications companies.

An Inefficient State Sector

The state sector is inefficient primarily because of a lack of incentive to compete. One reason for this lack of competition is that state-owned enterprises (SOEs) can access financial resources much more easily than private enterprises, and thus SOE funding comes at the cost of fewer funding opportunities for the private sector. SOEs have an advantage in obtaining funding in two ways. First, they take up an abnormally large share of China’s bank loans, because banks expect the government to implicitly guarantee those loans.[ii] Although SOEs only provided 16 percent of China’s employment and less than a third of national GDP in 2016, they received 70 percent of all corporate loans in the same year.[iii] For the same reason, SOEs have more favorable borrowing rates. According to The Economist, SOEs’ average annual borrowing rates in the Hong Kong bond market fall from 3.5 percent to 2 percent, if rating agencies take into account the government support and guarantees that they receive.[iv]

A second reason for the state sector’s inefficiency is that the structure of corporate governance in SOEs is not conducive to generating competitive behavior. This is primarily due to several reasons, all related to conflicts of interest between management and ownership. First, since promotion of the top SOE positions is retained by the Communist Party under the nomenklatura system, the promotional criteria for SOE managers – which frequently involve political projects or developmental objectives,[v] do not always coincide with economically rational incentives to increase profit or productivity.[vi] Second, a relative lack of external supervision and shareholder scrutiny over SOEs means that managers have substantial discretion over investment decisions and compensation policies.[vii] This encourages rent-seeking behavior and corruption. These problems in China’s corporate environment run counter to the guidelines recommended by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), which call for the state to grant SOEs “full operational autonomy” and respect the independence and the autonomy of the boards.[viii]

The Chinese government acknowledges the obstacles that inefficient SOEs pose to the need to drive up productivity and growth in the economy and has proposed a host of policies in response: it has strengthened managerial discipline through the anti-corruption campaign,[ix] and it placed the first major SOE into involuntary liquidation in September 2016.[x]  One of the solutions proposed to address the problem of corporate governance currently in progress is mixed ownership reform.[xi]

Policy and Procedure on Reform

The State Council and the Central Committee of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) issued three documents pertaining to mixed ownership reform between 2013 and 2015.[xii] No substantial progress on the reform had been implemented until after all three documents were issued. The first is the Decision on Major Issues Concerning Comprehensively Deepening Reforms (中共中央关于全面深化改革若干重大问题的决定), which was issued at the Third Plenum of the 18th Central Committee in November 2013. Among the plethora of plans for other types of SOE reform, the document promises to allow SOEs “to develop into mixed enterprises.”[xiii]

The second and third documents were issued by the State Council within two weeks of one another in September 2015: Guiding Opinions on Deepening SOE Reform (中共中央、国务院关于深化国有企业改革的指导意见)and Guiding Opinions on Mixed Ownership Reform (国务院关于国有企业发展混合所有制经济的意见). The former document focuses not only on mixed ownership but also on a whole variety of other SOE-related reforms. It highlights the importance of mixed ownership reform by stating that it is “the most significant means to improve the efficiency of SOEs.”[xiv] It also specifies the means by which non-state firms could participate in SOE ownership, including the purchase of stakes and convertible bonds. The third document is even more specific as it lists several SOE-dominated sectors that would be able to participate in the mixed ownership reform, including telecommunications, natural resources, oil and gas, and nuclear energy. It also lists the types of non-state capital, including foreign capital, eligible for investment in the SOEs.[xv] However, as with most guiding opinions issued by the central government, the documents were still vague with details on the procedures left to be elaborated in future policies issued by ministries and local authorities.

The procedure for implementing mixed ownership reform – abbreviated in Chinese as 混改 – can be condensed into two steps. The first step (混) is to invite a selected group of private investors to purchase shares from an SOE. The State-owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission (SASAC) and the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) first select the SOEs that will be subject to reform. The selected companies then create plans detailing which stakes or business units they will put up for sale. SOEs will typically sell 30 to 45 percent of units such as subsidiaries to private sector partners. The capital raised by the share sales typically raise more than 1 billion USD, which are reinvested in new projects jointly managed by the SOE and its new private partners.[xvi]

The second step (改) is the implementation of corporate governance reform and increased external supervision as a result of the presence and participation of the new private investors on the SOE board. Unlike retail investors who trade SOE shares through public listing for speculative purposes, private investors under the mixed ownership schemes are considered to be strategic partners who will have an active say in how the SOEs are managed and in how future projects will be carried out. [xvii] This reform therefore aims to not only increase funding for SOEs from private sources, but also to improve their operation and efficiency through allowing private investors to play an active role on setting company policy.

The first batch of SOEs to be reformed according to the mixed ownership reform pilot scheme were approved by NDRC in September 2016, a year after the authoritative documents were issued by the State Council. Nine Central SOEs[xviii] including China Unicom, China Eastern Airlines, China Southern Power Grid, Harbin Electric Corporation, China Nuclear Engineering and Construction Corporation and China Shipbuilding Industry Corporation were greenlighted to open up their businesses units for sale to private investors.[xix] A second batch of 10 Central SOEs was approved in April 2017, covering similar sectors and including defense and railway.[xx]

In July 2017, the government has also started allowing local SOEs to experiment with mixed ownership reform.[xxi] This was further confirmed in November when a third list, involving 31 more local and central SOEs, was issued by NDRC.[xxii] Although the majority of private investors hitherto revealed have mainly been large technology corporations, other sources of private capital have also appeared. Chinese private equity firm Wealth Capital announced that they formed a 5 billion RMB (756 million USD) investment fund in August 2017 that specifically targets SOEs undergoing mixed ownership reform.[xxiii]  The NDRC plans to “basically complete” SOE mixed ownership reform by the year 2020.[xxiv]

Challenges to Reform

The rationale behind the mixed ownership reforms is that by increasing the stakes of strategic private investors in SOEs, corporate governance could be improved by giving these private investors a voice on the board and allowing them to scrutinize managerial performance. However, there are three theoretical challenges to this rationale.

The first challenge is that private investors actually do not, and most likely will not, have a majority stake in any SOE under the mixed ownership reform scheme. This is for two reasons: the first reason is political. It is has been made clear by the authoritiesthat the objective of introducing mixed capital into SOEs is to strengthen the state sector. [xxv] Allowing private investors to hold a majority stake in SOEs would constitute privatization, and there is no impetus from any government or party policy to systematically privatize SOEs.[xxvi] A State Council directive in November 2017 requiring SOEs to transfer 10 percent of their shares into pension funds is also an indication that strong SOEs are integral to the government’s long-term plans.[xxvii] This solidifies SOEs’ importance in the Chinese economy, making systematic privatization even more unlikely. The second reason why privatization will not occur is commercial: SOEs are actually quite profitable when one is not putting their figures side by side with the even more successful private sector. The Ministry of Finance (MOF) reported that in the first ten months of 2017, profits for SOEs (central and local combined) grew by 24.6 percent year on year.[xxviii] It is also important to remember that the main impetus for the “grasping the large and letting go the small” (zhuada fangxiao) era of mass corporatization in the late-1990s was because they were making enormous losses. By contrast, the relatively profitable position of SOEs today makes it even less urgent for the government to grant private investors majority stakes in state sector firms. It is therefore questionable whether private investors with only minority stakes are capable of bringing about corporate governance reform, some of which will no doubt clash with the entrenched interests of incumbent SOE managers, many of whom are also the major shareholders.

The second challenge is that the introduction of private investors into Chinese SOEs might actually make it more difficult for an SOE board to reach a consensus regarding future projects and reform. This is because inviting private actors into SOEs’ ownership and managerial system further complicates the already byzantine structure of China’s state sector leadership. There are already a host of players and interest groups vying for influence in SOEs, including the CCP Organization Department’s nomenklatura system, whereby the CCP controls the appointment of SOE heads, SASAC’s nominal ownership of all Central SOEs, and the MOF for which SOE profits are a substantial source of revenue. SASAC and the CCP have strong developmental objectives for SOEs, for example to provide macroeconomic stability through increasing investments when China’s growth slows.[xxix] This clashes with MOF’s objective for SOEs to become financially sound by being more profit-oriented, which sometimes would mean conducting investments in conflict with developmental objectives.

It is also difficult to determine whether private actors who invest in these companies through the mixed ownership schemes do so because they see profitable opportunities or simply because they want to influence these SOEs for the benefit of their own primary businesses. As is true in the case study below, many private investors are also peer competitors from the same oligopolistic sectors. Experts also warn that mixed ownership reform in fact sucks resources from the private sector, depriving the latter of much-needed capital when the state sector already has a disproportionately large allocation of resources.[xxx] For example, it is estimated that 10 trillion RMB (1.5 trillion USD) is required for private investors to control (i.e. own 51 percent of shares) 40 percent of all SOEs; this is more money than Chinese public companies have ever raised on domestic stock markets (7 trillion RMB).[xxxi]

The third and perhaps the most enduring challenge that the mixed ownership reform fails to address is that the ownership of SOEs is becoming an increasingly less important issue in China’s current institutional environment. This is because the lines between SOEs and the private sector are becoming increasingly blurred, with the state exercising more influence over companies regardless of the nature of their ownership.[xxxii] For example, although the Third Plenum promised to give market forces a ‘decisive role’ in the economy, the CCP’s control over major private sector players in the form of party committees established above the boards of directors implies that the supposedly private market forces are ultimately under the control of the state. As a result, ownership of a company no longer necessarily implies having control or a decisive say over its operational and managerial decisions.

In fact, the state may actually increase control over SOEs that have undergone mixed ownership reform. This is because although inviting strategic private investors may diversify the board, strong party committees in the investors’ own respective primary businesses will help the government set a more political agenda for the SOE’s reform in the name of the party. This might be done in lieu of purely private or commercial considerations. Mixed ownership reform therefore might not necessarily lead to a retreat in the state’s involvement in the SOEs, opening up the possibility for continued misallocation of resources due to state interference.[xxxiii] 

One might think that the increasing blur between the public and private sectors would pose less of a problem for foreign investors, especially wholly-foreign owned enterprises that are established without the need for joint venture with SOEs. However, based on open source information, which may be incomplete, as of late 2017 none of the 19 SOEs in the first two pilot batches have included foreign investors as participants of their mixed ownership plans. The unsurprising reason for the apparentexclusion of foreign investors is that SOEs, especially inefficient SOEs, tend to dominate sectors pertaining to national security or pillar industries that are sensitive to foreign capital. This is despite the State Council’s August 2017 release of the Notice on Measures to Increase Foreign Investment, which reiterated support for the role of foreign capital in the reorganization of SOEs.[xxxiv]

Case Study: China Unicom

One of the first examples of mixed ownership reform is China Unicom’s announcement in August 2017 of its sale of 35.2 percent of its shares worth 78 billion RMB (11.7 billion USD) to 14 private investors.[xxxv] The investors include prominent technology companies such as Alibaba, Tencent, Baidu, JD.com, Life Insurance Company, CRRC Corp, and Didi Chuxing.[xxxvi] Unicom announced that its Shanghai-listed unit, China United Network Communications Ltd., would be used as the platform for these sales. After the deal is completed, that unit’s board will have 15 people in total: six from the state (including two from Unicom group), four from the new strategic private investors, and five independent non-executive directors.[xxxvii] This deal is also estimated to be the largest capital raising deal in the Asia-Pacific since 2010.[xxxviii] Unicom has also announced that as one of the first acts of the post-deal reform, it will soon consolidate its 27 departments into 18 in order to remove overlapping functions and cut red tape.[xxxix]

The first challenge mentioned above concerning the minority stake of private investors is apparent in Unicom’s scheme: although Unicom’s ownership of its own A-shares will drop from 62 percent to 36 percent, the state as a whole remains the majority stakeholder with 53 percent. The largest private investors participating in this sale – Tencent and Baidu – will only hold 5.18 and 3.3 percent of shares respectively.[xl] The composition of the new board – with private investors only holding four out of 15 seats – also reflects the private investors’ minority position. Perhaps most interestingly, China Life Insurance – which is 70 percent state-owned – is the largest of the new shareholders to participate in this mixed ownership scheme.[xli] It will hold 10 percent of Unicom’s Shanghai unit, almost a third of all the shares offered, further increasing the de facto stake the state holds.

The second challenge pertaining to conflicts of interests among the strategic private investors themselves is also apparent, with all three of China’s largest tech firms – Baidu, Alibaba, and Tencent (BAT) –  involved in this deal. The fact that they are rivals in their own industry could pose serious problems to cooperating and standing up against the majority interest of the state. Unicom’s party secretary and chairman Wang Xiaochu gave a speech in December where he defended the decision to include peer competitors onto the Unicom board. Wang argued, rather unconvincingly, that Unicom would be able to “utilize the comparative advantages of each private investor without generating unnecessary friction”, without giving any substantial explanation as to how that could be achieved.[xlii]

Finally, the third challenge of further blurring the lines between public and private capital is also reflected in this deal. The party apparatus has a strong presence in both Tencent and Baidu, the two largest private investors in the deal. Tencent’s party committee has more than 7000 members, around 23 percent of all its employees. Its party secretary, Guo Kaitian, is senior vice president of the company and has been in charge since the party committee was established in 2011. Tencent’s deputy party secretaries also hold senior managerial posts in charge of cybersecurity, social media, and government relations.[xliii] Baidu has more than 3600 party members[xliv], and its party secretary Zhu Guang is also a senior vice president of the company in charge of brand building, internal communication, and marketing.[xlv] However, given that we as of yet do not know who will be on the board of Unicom’s Shanghai business unit, it is difficult to definitively prove that the strength of these party committees will impede Tencent and Baidu’s potential to improve Unicom’s corporate governance as minority shareholders.

Conclusion

It is very difficult to empirically evaluate the results of mixed ownership reform for two reasons. The first is because this is only one of many policies that the government has issued for reforming SOEs; others include merging or consolidating existing SOEs as well as the creation of state sovereign wealth funds.[xlvi] This makes it challenging to measure the benefits of mixed ownership reform while controlling for the effects of other reforms. The second reason is because non-transparent changes that occur behind closed doors due to the reform, such as new managerial input and improved corporate governance, are hard to assess without conducting relevant interviews or obtaining inside information by other means. It is hard to verify the claim that party committees in private companies exercise influence over their board decisions on SOEs unless we know at least who their representatives on the board are, for example.  

In conclusion, it is too early to tell whether the mixed ownership reforms are succeeding. The two batches of greenlighted Central SOEs mentioned above are merely pilot projects and only a fraction of those greenlighted companies have announced concrete plans for selling their stakes. The government announced that it aims to complete the reforms by 2020, and yet as of August 2018 only two thirds of central SOEs have completed the first step of allowing private investors to hold shares.[xlvii] The slow pace of implementation, the lack of good measures for verifying results, and the three conflicting challenges explained above mean that mixed ownership reforms alone are unlikely to solve the enduring challenges that SOEs face today.


[i] Arthur Kroeber, China’s Economy: What Everyone Needs to Know (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2016), 100.

2 Both Chart 1 and Chart 2 are calculated from annual data drawn from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) website’s “Industry: Main Indicators of Industrial Enterprises by Status of Registration” section. http://data.stats.gov.cn/english/easyquery.htm?cn=C01  

[ii] Yuan Yang and Tom Mitchell, “China’s private sector misses out on credit boom,” Financial Times, July 3, 2016, https://www.ft.com/content/833c5208-3eba-11e6-8716-a4a71e8140b0.

[iii] Qu Hongbin, “China’s dual-track economy,” HSBC, July 29, 2017, http://www.gbm.hsbc.com/insights/economics/china-dual-track-economy.

[iv] “China’s corporate debt: State of grace,” The Economist, November 17, 2016, https://www.economist.com/news/finance-and-economics/21710291-government-their-side-chinas-state-firms-borrow-cheaply-state-grace.

[v] Barry Naughton, “The Current Wave of State Enterprise Reform in China: A Preliminary Appraisal,” Asian Economic Policy Review, 12 (2017): 283.

[vi] Barry Naughton, The Chinese Economy: Transitions and Growth (Cambridge: MIT Press, 2006), 317.

[vii]Zhaofeng Wang, “Corporate governance under state control: the Chinese experience,” Theoretical Inquiries in Law 13, no.2 (2012): 499.

[viii] “OECD Guidelines on Corporate Governance of State-Owned Enterprises,” OECD (2015): 26.

[ix] Jamil Anderlini, “China corruption purge snares 115 SOE ‘tigers’,” Financial Times, May 18, 2015, https://www.ft.com/content/ad997d5c-fd3c-11e4-9e96-00144feabdc0.

[x] Dinny McMahon, “The Anatomy of a Bankrupt State Firm’s Liquidation,” Marco Polo, September 26, 2017, https://macropolo.org/anatomy-bankrupt-state-firms-liquidation/.

[xi] “李克强主持召开深化国有企业改革和发展座谈会,” State-owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission, September 21, 2015, http://www.sasac.gov.cn/n103/n85881/n85901/c2060930/content.html.

[xii] “中共中央关于全面深化改革若干重大问题的决定,” State Council, November 15, 2013,http://www.gov.cn/jrzg/2013-11/15/content_2528179.htm.

“中共中央、国务院关于深化国有企业改革的指导意见,” State Council, September 13, 2015, http://www.gov.cn/zhengce/2015-09/13/content_2930440.htm.

“国务院关于国有企业发展混合所有制经济的意见,” State Council website, September 24, 2015, http://www.gov.cn/zhengce/content/2015-09/24/content_10177.htm.

[xiii] “中共中央关于全面深化改革若干重大问题的决定,” State Council, November 15, 2013,http://www.gov.cn/jrzg/2013-11/15/content_2528179.htm.   

[xiv] “中共中央、国务院关于深化国有企业改革的指导意见,” State Council, September 13, 2015, http://www.gov.cn/zhengce/2015-09/13/content_2930440.htm.

[xv] “国务院关于国有企业发展混合所有制经济的意见,” State Council website, September 24, 2015, http://www.gov.cn/zhengce/content/2015-09/24/content_10177.htm.

[xvi] Yang Ge, “5 Things to Know About China’s Mixed-Ownership Reform,” Caixin Global, August 28, 2017, http://www.caixinglobal.com/2017-08-28/101136807.html.

[xvii] Yang Ge, “5 Things to Know About China’s Mixed-Ownership Reform,” Caixin Global, August 28, 2017, http://www.caixinglobal.com/2017-08-28/101136807.html.

[xviii] This was out of a total of 98 Central SOEs controlled by SASAC.

[xix] “China to unveil central SOE mixed-ownership reform plans,” Xinhua, April 12, 2015, http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/2017-04/12/c_136202820.htm.

[xx] “Central SOE mixed ownership reform to get green light soon,” China Daily, April 25, 2017, http://www.chinadaily.com.cn/business/2017-04/25/content_29077222.htm.

[xxi] “China’s mixed-ownership reform to cover locally-administered SOEs,” Xinhua, July 12, 2017, http://english.gov.cn/news/top_news/2017/07/12/content_281475723009544.htm.

[xxii] “China includes 31 more SOEs in pilot mixed-ownership reform,” China Daily, November 15, 2017, http://www.chinadaily.com.cn/business/2017-11/15/content_34564785.htm.

[xxiii] Georgina Lee, “Mixed ownership reform an opportunity for private equity to invest in state enterprises,” South China Morning Post, December 5, 2017, http://www.scmp.com/business/companies/article/2123007/mixed-ownership-reform-opportunity-private-equity-invest-state.

[xxiv] Chong Hua, “发改委明确国企混改时间表:2020本完成国企股权多元化,” People’s Daily, August 28, 2014, http://energy.people.com.cn/n/2014/0828/c71661-25554584.html.

[xxv] “Decision of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China on Some Major Issues Concerning Comprehensively Deepening the Reform,” CCP Central Committee Third Plenum, November 2013, http://www.china.org.cn/china/third_plenary_session/2014-01/16/content_31212602_2.htm.

[xxvi] David Stanway, “China SOEs to resist privatization, consolidate Party rule: state asset regulator,” Reuters, June 16, 2017, https://www.reuters.com/article/us-china-soe/china-soes-to-resist-privatization-consolidate-party-rule-state-asset-regulator-idUSKBN1970GW.

[xxvii] “国务院关于印发划转部分国有资本充实社保基金实施方案的通知,” State Council, November 18, 2017, http://www.gov.cn/zhengce/content/2017-11/18/content_5240652.htm.

[xxviii] “2017年1-10月全国国有及国有控股企业经济运行情况,” Ministry of Finance, November 21, 2017, http://zcgls.mof.gov.cn/zhengwuxinxi/qiyeyunxingdongtai/201711/t20171120_2754015.html.

[xxix] Naughton, “The Current Wave of State Enterprise Reform in China: A Preliminary Appraisal,” 289.

[xxx] Henry Sender, “China’s state-owned business reform a step in the wrong direction,” Financial Times, September 25, 2017, https://www.ft.com/content/8a393130-a1b9-11e7-b797-b61809486fe2.

[xxxi] Houze Song, “State-Owned Enterprise Reforms: Untangling Ownership, Control, and Corporate Governance,” Marco Polo, December 4, 2017, https://macropolo.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/State-Owned-Enterprise-Reforms.pdf.

[xxxii] Curtis J. Milhaupt and Wentong Zheng, “Why Mixed-Ownership Reforms Cannot Fix China’s State Sector,” Paulson Institute, January 2016, http://www.paulsoninstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/01/PPM_SOE-Ownership_Milhaupt-and-Zheng_English_R.pdf.

[xxxiii] Gabriel Wildau and Don Weinland, “China state-owned telecom privatisation seen as too timid,” Financial Times, August 21, 2017, https://www.ft.com/content/0dd0b152-8659-11e7-bf50-e1c239b45787.

[xxxiv] “国务院关于促进外资增长若干措施的通知,” State Council, August 16, 2017, http://www.gov.cn/zhengce/content/2017-08/16/content_5218057.htm.  

[xxxv] “Alibaba to China Life Join Unicom’s $11.7 Billion Stake Sale,” Bloomberg, August 16, 2017, https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-08-16/unicom-to-raise-11-7-billion-via-stock-sale-to-alibaba-others.

[xxxvi] Bien Perez, “China taps nation’s who’s who of technology to anchor ownership shakeup at Unicom’s parent,” South China Morning Post, August 16, 2017, http://www.scmp.com/tech/article/2106982/unicom-shares-halted-speculation-mounts-new-investors-its-parent-company.

[xxxvii] Julie Zhu and Sijia Jiang, “China Unicom’s $12 billion ownership-reforms plan mired in confusion,” Reuters, August 18, 2017, https://www.reuters.com/article/us-china-unicom-stocks/china-unicoms-12-billion-ownership-reforms-plan-mired-in-confusion-idUSKCN1AY1A4.

[xxxviii] Zhu and Jiang, “China Unicom’s $12 billion ownership-reforms plan mired in confusion.”

[xxxix] “王晓初谈联通混改: “混”已结束, “改”是当前最主要工作,” China.com, December 4, 2017, http://economy.china.com/news/11173316/20171204/31757109_all.html#page_2.

[xl] “China Unicom brings in private investors,” Xinhua, August 16, 2017, http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/2017-08/16/c_136531027.htm.

[xli] Zheng Zhigang, “联通混改 “得”与“失”,” Financial Times Chinese, August 28, 2017,  http://www.ftchinese.com/story/001073941.

[xlii] “王晓初谈联通混改: “混”已结束, “改”是当前最主要工作,” China.com, December 4, 2017, http://economy.china.com/news/11173316/20171204/31757109_all.html#page_2.

[xliii]  “腾讯:公司党员超7000人,带头开发微信等代表性产品,” Sina Tech, October 14, 2017, http://tech.sina.com.cn/i/2017-10-14/doc-ifymvuys9864621.shtml.

[xliv] “盘点成立党委的互联网公司:其实除了BAT们还有很多,” Sina Tech, July 1, 2017, http://tech.sina.com.cn/i/2017-07-01/doc-ifyhrxtp6420838.shtml.

[xlv] “Executive Profile: Zhu Guang,” Bloomberg,  https://www.bloomberg.com/research/stocks/people/person.asp?personId=51939074&privcapId=428613.

[xlvi] Naughton, “The Current Wave of State Enterprise Reform in China: A Preliminary Appraisal,” 290.

[xlvii] “央企积极推进混合所有制改革,” People’s Daily, August 31, 2018, http://finance.people.com.cn/n1/2018/0831/c1004-30262396.html.  

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