Business / Economy

Premier's southern trip to push China's reform drive

(Xinhua) Updated: 2015-01-07 09:21

Premier's southern trip to push China's reform drive

Chinese Premier Li Keqiang (L front) visits a community in Guangzhou, capital of south China's Guangdong province, Jan 5, 2015. Li made an inspection tour in Shenzhen and Guangzhou from Jan 4 to 6. [Photo/Xinhua]

BEIJING - Chinese Premier Li Keqiang said China should count on reform, opening up and structural adjustment to improve economy during a three-day tour of south China's Guangdong province.

Li said China should push forward reform and opening up steadfastly in a bid to maintain economic growth within a proper range, as the country is confronted with new challenges in an economic "new normal".

China should strike a balance between steady economic growth and necessary adjustment in economic structure and promoting reform will help meet that goal, Li said, adding the reform should be of better quality and development more coordinated.

Given poor exports and weak domestic demand, China is increasingly reliant on a reform in nearly all fields to ensure sustainable growth during an unavoidable slowdown.

The country has carried out a string of policies and measures, such as setting up free trade zones, streamlining administration and delegating powers, encouraging innovation and helping small firms.

China's GDP expanded at 7.3 percent year on year in the third quarter of 2014, the weakest quarterly figure since 2009.

The Premier kicked off his tour on Sunday, the first working day of 2015, visiting Shenzhen and provincial capital Guangzhou.

Shenzhen was one of China's earliest special economic zones and Guangdong has always been considered the most open part of the country.

The word "innovation" has been heard a lot on the tour, which has passed through the most high-tech or creative areas.

On Sunday Li visited Qianhai Webank, China's first Internet bank and one of five private banks in China. The bank has low costs compared to traditional banks and focuses on small loans to individuals and small firms.

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