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General Secretary Xi Jinping Talks About the Economy When Meeting CPPCC Members from the Economic Sector

2020/05/24

On the morning of 23 May, Xi Jinping, General Secretary of the CPC Central Committee, President of China and Chairman of the Central Military Commission, visited CPPCC members from the economic sector who are attending the third session of the 13th CPPCC National Committee. Xi joined them in a joint panel discussion and heard their views and suggestions.

In his remarks, Xi underscored the imperative to take the pulse of the economy from a comprehensive, dialectical and long-term perspective, and called for exploring new opportunities and making new advances amid challenges and changes. He urged tapping the potential of the Chinese market, which is the largest in the world, and keeping to the strategic direction of supply-side structural reform.

Xi emphasized the importance of consolidating the underlying trend for stable and sound economic performance in the long run, and strengthening the fundamental role of agriculture. He also called for ensuring stability in the six areas of employment, finance, foreign trade, foreign investment, domestic investment, and market expectations, and meeting the six priorities of employment, people's livelihood, the development of market entities, food and energy security, stable operation of the industrial and supply chains, and smooth functioning at the community level.

Xi stressed that all major policy decisions must be fully delivered, so as to secure a decisive victory in building a moderately prosperous society in all respects and eradicating poverty, and ensure the steady and sound growth of the Chinese economy amid challenges.

Xi underlined the need to have a scientific analysis of the situation and bear in mind the larger picture of development. It is important to look at the current difficulties, risks and challenges from a comprehensive, dialectical and long-term perspective, boost confidence of the whole society, especially market entities, and consolidate the momentum of steady, sound and sustained economic growth.

Xi pointed out that the Chinese economy is at a crucial stage of transforming the growth model, upgrading the structure, and fostering new growth drivers. It enjoys bright prospects. Meanwhile, it is facing relatively heavy pressure due to difficulties and challenges caused by a mix of structural, institutional and cyclical problems, compounded by COVID-19.

Moreover, the Chinese economy also faces challenges such as deep recession of the world economy, sharp decline of international trade and investment, turbulence of the international financial market, restrictions on international exchanges, headwinds against economic globalization, rising protectionism and unilateralism in some countries, and increase of geopolitical risks. All of which means that China must seek development in an increasingly unstable and uncertain world.

Having said that, Xi also emphasized that the basic characteristics of the Chinese economy remain unchanged ― it is still highly resilient and has much potential and ample room to leverage a host of policy tools. China boasts the world's largest and most comprehensive industrial system, strong production capacity, and sufficient supporting industries. It has over 100 million market entities and a pool of over 170 million talents with higher education or professional skills. It is a huge market of 1.4 billion people, of whom more than 400 million are in the middle-income bracket. China is also experiencing rapid development of new industrialization, IT application, urbanization and agricultural modernization, which presents enormous potential of investment demand.

In addition, China's basic socialist economic system means that public ownership plays a dominant role and economic entities under diverse forms of ownership develop side by side; distribution according to labor is dominant and a variety of other modes of distribution exist alongside it; and the socialist market economy is promoted. This system not only energizes market entities and unleashes and strengthens productive forces, but also strikes a proper balance between efficiency and equity and facilitates common prosperity.

Xi said that going forward, China will give top priority to meeting domestic demand in development, and accelerate the building of a comprehensive system of domestic demand. To this end, China will vigorously advance innovation in science, technology and other fields, speed up the development of strategic emerging industries such as digital economy, smart manufacturing, health care and new materials, and foster more new growth drivers and poles.

China will remove barriers between production, distribution, circulation and consumption. It will make steady progress in creating a new development pattern where domestic and foreign markets can boost each other, with domestic market as the mainstay. It will also foster new strengths in international cooperation and competition under the new circumstances.

Xi stressed that despite the rise of protectionism in the world, China will stand on the right side of history and uphold multilateralism and democracy in international relations. China will continue to pursue development through openness and win-win cooperation, and make economic globalization more open, inclusive, balanced and beneficial to all, so as to build an open world economy.

Xi also underlined the importance of pursuing safe development. He called for efforts to improve relevant institutions and mechanisms, shore up inadequacies, ensure the safety and security of industrial and supply chains, and prevent and resolve major risks.

(The full text is available at: http://www.xinhuanet.com/politics/2020lh/2020-05/23/c_1126023987.htm)

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