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China to Aid Art, Entertainment Group Reform

Xinhua News Agency, June 14, 2013 Adjust font size:

A directive supporting the reform and development of art and entertainment groups formerly funded by the state was released by the Ministry of Culture (MOC) on Thursday.

The document, which comes in the form of guiding opinions, is aimed at standardizing the reform of these groups and improving their capability for development.

The opinions also call for the nurturing of key art and entertainment groups, as well as support for small and medium-sized troupes.

China's cultural restructuring has been ongoing since 2006, with the aim of turning state-funded cultural institutions into profitable companies.

According to the MOC, all 2,103 state-funded art and entertainment groups are now companies.

However, most of these groups are still struggling to adapt to modern management styles and have weak capabilities in turning profits, according to the directive.

The document urges authorities to increase fiscal and tax support for these groups as well as improve facilities, like conditions for rehearsals.

It also encourages investors to help finance groups.

Minister of Culture Cai Wu said these restructured groups can not develop soundly without a helping hand from the government.

Cai added that the directive was also worked out as a choice for the transformation of government functions.

During a nationwide teleconference held about a month ago, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang urged officials to properly handle relations between the government, the market and society.

Li said the focus of government work should be shifted toward creating a favorable environment for development, providing quality public services and maintaining social equity and justice.

Cai urged cultural authorities to complete their shift from running art and entertainment groups to simply managing them.

The minister also asked authorities to give full play to the market and reduce the role the government plays in the management of these groups.

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