Chairman of China's top SOE regulator briefs the media on SOE reform and development
The State-owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission of the State Council (SASAC), China’s top state-owned enterprises (SOEs) regulator, held a press conference on SOE reform and development during the first session of the 13th National People's Congress (NPC) in Beijing on Saturday.
SASAC Chairman Xiao Yaqing and Deputy Secretary-General and spokesperson Peng Huagang answered questions from Chinese and foreign press.
Commenting on a range of issues that emerged in the latest round of restructuring over state-owned conglomerates, from streamlining bloated operations to creating innovative and competitive internationals, Xiao said that supervision over government-controlled behemoths would shift from administrative measures towards more strategic guidance, ensuring that values of the firms steadily increase.
The body will guide them to lower leverage and further pare down assets that are either cumbersome or no longer comply with the nation's strategic needs. 
Companies owned by the state will also set an example for the rest of the economy in the battle to control debt and scale down on financial leverage and excess spending, though so far, the progress has been incremental. Overall debt was reduced by 0.4 percent in the past year, said Xiao. 
The latest figures show that efficiency and profitability for these enterprises have been on the mend, with a 15.2 percent increase in profits and a similar rise in revenues. Though China’s top three SOEs – the State Grid, Sinopec and Petrochina – are among the largest in the world by revenue, there are still many aspects of management and quality in which they are not in the same ballpark as the top multinationals. This area is where China will continue to open up and learn from the best global names.
Click here to watch the live streaming of the press conference.