On June 8, the Ministry of Commerce held its regular press conference. Spokesman Sun Jiwen answered the hot issues that concern media at home and abroad. Here is the record.
Situation and Reason for the Price Declining of Agricultural Products
Since this year, the prices of agricultural products such as pork, egg and vegetable have declined remarkably. According to the watchdog, the market price index of national edible agricultural products last week went down 5.5% year on year, hitting the lowest level since the middle of July 2015. Among these, the average wholesale price of pork went down 22% year on year, that of eggs fell by 25% year on year, and that of 30 kinds of vegetables dropped by 7% year on year. The prices of other agricultural products such as grain food, edible oil and beef and mutton remained stable on the whole.
The major reason for the price declining of meat, eggs and vegetables is the increasing supply. Taking live pig market as an example, the pork production and pig slaughter showed positive growth for the first time since 2015.
It is estimated that in the second half of this year, the domestic live pig and pork market supply will increase steadily, and the price appears to have a downward trend. The supply of egg market has been sufficient recently and the price of egg after autumn is expected to be steadily picking up. In the next few months, the price of vegetable will continue to drop on the whole, but we could not exclude the possibility that the price of some products will greatly increase sometime or in some region.
The price decreasing of meat, egg and vegetable is a piece of good news for the mass consumers, but we also pay close attention to the negative effects that the low-price vegetables have affected the farmers’ benefits. We will strengthen market supervision, release market supply and demand, and price change information timely. We will also better guide production and operation. At the same time, we will positively promote to help farmers expand sales and solve unsalable problem through many ways such as such as rural e-commerce platform.
Q: It is reported that increasing demand for housekeeping services has laid bare many problems in the industry. What measures has MOFCOM taken to standardize the sector and promote development of housekeeping services?
A: As China ushers in an era of two children and aged population, domestic housekeeping services have registered an explosive growth. Statistics show that China’s housekeeping services saw revenue of 350 billion yuan in 2016, growing by 26% year on year. It is estimated that during the 13th FYP period, domestic housekeeping services will maintain a high speed growth rate above 20%.
With a view to meeting the diverse needs of consumers, addressing the problems in domestic housekeeping services such as lack of standards and promoting sound development of the sector, we have started from the supply side and collaborated with relevant ministries in doing the following things.
First, we have improved regulations and standards. We have promulgated Interim Measures for the Administration of Family Services Sector, released Housekeeping Services Contract and formulated 17 industry standards such as Housekeeping Services Standards and Common Terms of Housekeeping Services. We have promoted formulation of over 180 local standards and systems, which were rolled out nationwide later, putting in place a multi-tiered framework of regulations and standards in business operation and management and behaviors of service providers and consumers.
Second, we have improved services quality. Over one million of housekeepers have been trained through the “housekeeping services project”. The on-the-job training enhances the overall quality and skills of the services providers.
Third, we have increased supply capacity. A host of enterprises with good management, operation and models have grown in the market. We have supported over 300 leading players in infrastructure upgrade and management improvement and helped more than 400 SMEs in sectors of baby nurse, early education, housekeeping and elderly care overhaul their stores and upgrade services management systems. Leading enterprises play a guiding role in standardizing and expanding the industry.
Fourth, we have created new ways of supply. The Implementation Opinions of MOFCOM on Accelerating the Integration of Innovation and Development of Online and Offline Resident Life Service Industry provides guidance for the sector to integrate with Internet+ model. We have endorsed housekeeping services network centers built in over 160 prefecture-level central cities, which provides such services as information release, order online, rating and dispute settlement and greatly enhances efficiency and quality of services.
Next, we will focus on the supply side, including the system, structure, channels, quality, capacity and environment of supply, to promote sound development of the sector.
Data source: Ministry of Commerce People’s Republic of China