May 18, 2022 06:58 PM

In Depth: Localities Push Ahead With Personal Bankruptcy Pilots as National Efforts Stall

Photo: VCG
Photo: VCG

Qi Sheng, 49, ran an after-school tutoring firm with his wife that served around 200 students in Shenzhen. In a good year, their business could make 200,000 yuan ($29,450) a month. Life was comfortable — until Covid-19 put in-person classes in limbo.

The pandemic left their classrooms empty for months. The “double reduction” policy — which aims to reduce Chinese students’ workload both from school and from private tutoring — added fuel to the fire and forced them to pile on over 1 million yuan in debt as they struggled to pay their rent and workers. On top of that, Qi’s wife was stricken with illness and required expensive treatment. Pressed by growing financial strains, Qi and his wife filed for personal bankruptcy liquidation at the Shenzhen Intermediate People’s Court in May 2021.

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