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PRESS DIGEST - China - May 8

May 8 (Reuters) - Chinese newspapers available in Beijing and Shanghai carried the following stories on Thursday. Reuters has not checked the stories and does not vouch for their accuracy.


- The IPO applications of another three companies have been approved by China's securities regulator, brining the total number of approved IPOs since China resumed approvals in April to six.


- New index futures trade based on local stock indexes, SSE50 and CSI500, are expected to be launched shortly once regulators complete the necessary approvals, sources told the paper.


- The China Securities Regulatory Commission requires IPO underwriters including Everbright Securities Co Ltd and Haitong Securities Co Ltd to submit the first batch of IPO issuance plans by Wednesday, people familiar with the issue told the paper.


- China's tax officials said new tax breaks this year will help more than 2 million small and micro firms halve their tax bills. TO enjoy a 50 percent cut in business taxes, these firms will no longer need approval from tax authorities but only have to report to tax agencies, said an official from the State Administration of Taxation.


- More crowdfunding platforms are springing up to support entrepreneurs, but analysts warn that investor protection needs improvement. China's crowdfunding market could reach $46 billion to $50 billion by 2025, and the market for all developing countries could be $96 billion by then, according to the World Bank.


- The essence of the religious extremism in China's western province of Xinjiang is violence and ethnic hatred. The Chinese government and the Communist Party will make great efforts to tackle this challenge and reconstruct national solidarity and social stability in Xinjiang, the paper said in an editorial.

For Hong Kong and South China newspapers see.....

($1 = 6.1201 Chinese yuan) (Reporting by Shanghai Newsroom; Editing by Sunil Nair)