China's state-owned enterprises (SOEs) saw a robust increase of assets despite a decline in profits in the first nine months of the year, evidence of waning profitability at these companies, latest data from the Ministry of Finance (MOF) showed.
By the end of September, the total assets of these SOEs was 128.8 trillion yuan (about 19 trillion U.S. dollars), representing growth of 9.7 percent year on year, the MOF said.
The assets of SOEs administered by the central government rose 7.4 percent in the first nine months year on year to 67.9 trillion yuan, while the assets of local SOEs jumped 12.3 percent over the period to 60.9 trillion yuan, according to breakdown figures.
The combined liabilities of all SOEs grew 9.9 percent year on year to 85.3 trillion yuan over the same period.
China has thousands of SOEs, 103 of which are under the control of the central government. Many of these are industry leaders, but some have been criticized for weak profitability.
Earlier official data showed that the profits of China's SOEs fell 1.6 percent year on year to 1.72 trillion yuan during the first three quarters of the year.