China’s Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) Development Index, based on a survey of 3,000 SMEs, edged down 0.1 points from the previous month to 88.2 in May, the latest industry data showed.
The index saw its decline narrow from the previous month, but still made the fourth consecutive month of fall for the gauge, the lowest since 2021, said the China Association of Small and Medium Enterprises.
Severe epidemic situations in major cities which choked industrial and supply chains, coupled with overseas uncertainties, have undermined the business prospects of SMEs, said the association.
The sub-indexes for capital and labor force stood in the expansion zone in May, while that for costs was in the contraction zone, indicating rising business costs for SMEs.
The survey on samples showed business resumption made better progress in May but still was at a lower level.
The share of enterprises operating at full capacity rose 2.2 percentage points compared with that in April.
The industry group calls for faster implementation of the State Council’s policy package last month which includes a prominent part contributing to bolstering micro, small and medium-sized enterprises.