Ministry of civil affairs announces two new standards to regulate online fundraising platforms


Source: 公益时报

Tencent’s well known “9/9 charity day” is coming up in just over a month, and many of China’s charity organizations are actively preparing for it. The occasion highlights the importance of China’s online fundraising platforms (hereinafter referred to as platforms), but there is a perceived need to improve such platforms’ management.

On July 30, the Ministry of Civil Affairs officially announced two recommended industrial standards: the “Basic technical specifications for online fundraising platforms for charitable organizations” and the “Basic management specifications for online fundraising platforms for charitable organizations”.

The two standards strengthen overall supervision, and establish a rule that if platforms fail to pass a government assessment twice, their qualifications will be canceled. Meanwhile, the new standards are also intended to protect the rights of donors through a series of arrangements which enhance the platforms’ service functions. In response to these two industrial standards, platforms are supposed to consciously accept dynamic management and social supervision.

When it comes to information transparency, the platforms are firstly required to make a clear distinction between public donations and individual help. Secondly, information on public donations should be posted prominently on the webpage. Thirdly, platforms should perform duties of disclosure, and announce their operation information to the public at least once every half year.

In terms of development and promotion, the two industrial standards require platforms to strengthen their service functions by ensuring non-discriminatory treatment, clearly stating their fees, and properly managing information on the donations they receive and on the donors’ identities.

The two standards will be formally implemented starting on August 1, 2017.

Translated by Shen Duojia