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Country resolved to expand high-level opening-up

By Liu Zhihua | China Daily | Updated: 2022-03-06 13:51
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Deputies to the National People's Congress attend the opening of the fifth session of the 13th NPC at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing on Saturday. [Photo/Xinhua]

The latest Government Work Report confirms China's unwavering determination to deepen reform and further expand high-level opening-up despite the complexity of the domestic and external situations.

According to experts and business leaders, the furthering of high-level opening-up will benefit enterprises both at home and abroad, while injecting more confidence and impetus into the global economic recovery.

In the Government Work Report delivered at the opening of the fifth session of the 13th National People's Congress on Saturday, Premier Li Keqiang said China will make full use of international and domestic markets and resources, continue to expand international economic and trade cooperation, and push for in-depth reform and high-quality development by promoting highstandard opening-up.

The nation will take a series of measures to stabilize foreign trade, make active use of foreign investment, promote high-quality cooperation under the Belt and Road Initiative framework, and deepen multilateral and bilateral economic and trade cooperation.

"As the world's second-largest economy with a huge and energetic domestic market, China's proactive expansion of high-standard opening-up will effectively spur the flow of production factors, which will deliver stronger confidence in global cooperation to others," said Zhou Mi, a senior researcher at the Chinese Academy of International Trade and Economic Cooperation.

"That will help motivate other countries to work together to deal with the uncertainties in the international environment to seek economic growth at a time when the global pandemic has entered another year," Zhou added.

The investment from the central budget will reach 640 billion yuan this year, up by 30 billion yuan from 2021, and the government will make improving the people's well-being an investment priority, he said.

With over 10 million students set to graduate from colleges this year, Li said the government will provide them with stronger policy support and uninterrupted services to ensure they can find jobs or start businesses.

To encourage innovation development, Li said the government will raise the tax deduction coverage for small and medium science and tech enterprises from 75 percent to 100 percent, grant tax breaks to enterprises that invest in basic research and support more foreign investment in medium-and high-end manufacturing, R&D and modern services.

Wang Yiming, a national political adviser and a member of the monetary board of the People's Bank of China, said a growth target of around 5.5 percent reflected the government's confidence in economic growth this year.

"It would be a remarkable achievement for China, as an economy with a GDP of over 114 trillion yuan, to maintain such growth, given the complex and profound changes in the global development landscape," he said.

He added that small and mediumsized enterprises and self-employed individuals remained a key underpinning for the nation's job creation and economic prosperity. And that's why they are the primary beneficiaries of the new tax cuts and refunds this year.

Xiang Dong, deputy head of the Research Office of the State Council, told a news briefing on Saturday that the GDP growth target is in line with China's potential rate of growth and conducive to anchoring expectations, boosting confidence and building consensus on the country's development prospects.

"Achieving economic growth of around 5.5 percent will lay the foundation for expanding employment and raising incomes, making sure that the economy continues to stay within the reasonable range," he said.

He Lifeng, head of the National Development and Reform Commission, said on the sidelines of the NPC session that the strong resilience of the Chinese economy and the vitality and capacity of the nation's market players to resist risks serves as a big source of confidence and provides a strong underpinning for China to achieve its 5.5-percent GDP growth target.

He highlighted the nation's green transition as a new source of growth and commercial opportunities, saying that the nation is planning to develop its largest wind and solar power base in the Gobi Desert in West China.

Zhang Yue and Zhou Lanxu contributed to this story.

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