Majority US NGOs in China unregistered

Beijing, March 31: Less than three percent of American non-governmental organisations operating in China are registered with the government, a report has said.

There were about 1,000 US NGOs in China, but only 23 had legal status from the civil affairs department by the end of 2009, the China Daily said, citing a report by the China Charity and Donation Information Center.

Without a licence, these organisations risk being banned from operating in the country.

Such a low rate of registration — which gives legal identity — has hindered the sustainable development of American NGOs in China, the report said.

In China, NGOs must be affiliated with a government department willing to shoulder the risk for their operation as a precondition for registration.

Without registering, NGOs cannot enjoy tax cuts or raise funds from the public.

The report estimated that American NGOs have donated 20 billion yuan (over $3 billion) in China since the late 1970s.

About 80 percent of the funds went to universities, scientific institutions and government organisations.

IANS