Since the start of 2020, people across China have been working together to fight against outbreak of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19). On 30 January 2020, the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security (“MHRSS”) issued an announcement regarding the administration of Chinese social security contributions during the period of prevention and containment of the spread of COVID-19 (Renshetingmingdian  No. 7, hereinafter referred to as "Announcement No. 7"), to ensure appropriate measures are stipulated by local Social Security Bureau (“SSB”). Several local SSBs also released their respective local practices for the administration of social security contributions in response to Announcement No. 7. In addition to Announcement No. 7, the Standing Committee of the State Council met on 18 February 2020 and decided to reduce or waive employer obligations on social security contributions for a specified period of time to ease the burden of enterprises during this difficult time.
Announcement No. 7 is instrumental in providing local SSBs with a framework on administering social security contributions during the outbreak of COVID-19. In particular, allowing enterprises to make catchup employer social security contributions within a period of 3 months following containment of COVID-19 outbreak without adversely impact the employee’s rights to social security benefits.
The Standing Committee of the State Council also determined that it was appropriate to reduce or waive employer contributions to pension, unemployment and work-related injury insurance schemes for enterprises in the following areas:
Between February and June 2020: All enterprises enrolled in China Social Security Schemes are exempt from making employer contributions to pension, unemployment and work-related injury insurance schemes.
- Other Provinces & Cities (except Hubei)
Between February and June 2020: Micro, small and medium size enterprises are exempt from making employer contributions to pension, unemployment and work-related injury insurance schemes.
Between February and April 2020: Large enterprises may reduce employer contributions to pension, unemployment and workrelated injury insurance schemes by 50%.