Hangzhou Administrative Service Center in Zhejiang province is one of the first in the country operating under the newly-instated "At Most One Visit" reforms. (Photo provided to China Daily)
'At Most One Visit' has seen several key government departments and offices integrated
Being bogged down in government red tape is something business people have come to expect as part of their daily lives if they are in big cities.
The public sector is too often the slowest to adapt to the latest in technology and innovation.
This usually leaves businesses to suffer through long queues and inefficiency just to get that tax credit or renew a business license.
But that seems set to change in East China's Zhejiang province.
Earlier this year it began piloting a system aimed at streamlining and bringing such services online, as well as making sure that if you have to visit a government department, you only do it once.
The scheme, loosely dubbed "At Most One Visit", has seen the integration of several government departments and placed them all under one roof at new administrative service centers throughout the province.
Wang Haiming, chief executive officer of Beyond Electronic Technology, a manufacturer of massage chairs based in Ningbo, Zhejiang province, has experienced the new system at Fenghua district's administration service center.
"It took less than one month to get all of our documents processed on our latest project," said Wang. "Previously we would be waiting three to four months."
He claimed that the streamlined processing has allowed his business to save time and money in the building ofa new 72,000-square-meter manufacturing base.
Zhejiang has been making efforts to improve its investment environment, with the newly-launched "At Most One Visit" at the fore, according to Zhuo Yongliang, chief researcher of the Research Center of Information Technology & Economic and Social Development, an independent academic institute.
The Zhejiang Statistics Bureau reported GDP for the East China province of 1.06 trillion yuan (5 billion) in the first quarter of this year, up 8 percent on the same period in 2016.
It was also higher than the national average of 6.9 percent.
From January to April, gross profit of industrial enterprises in Zhejiang with annual revenue above 20 million yuan each reached 133.3 billion yuan, an increase of 18 percent compared with the first four months of 2016.
High-end manufacturing and information technology businesses were key to driving the economic engine.
Zhuo attributed the fast growth in Zhejiang, amid a general global slowdown, to the provincial government's efforts in upgrading its administrative services.
Companies are also supporting the scheme.
The "At Most One Visit" reform is taking advantage of Alipay, an online mobile payment system owned by e-commerce giant Alibaba Group Holding Ltd, established in Hangzhou, the provincial capital, in 1999.
According to Alipay in February, the app has 400 million registered users－more than the entire population of Europe.