Macro regulation aimed at curbing risk By Xin Zhiming (China Daily)
Hu Jintao, said yesterday the authorities will use a comprehensive fiscal and monetary policy package to improve macroeconomic regulation and rebalance the economy. He is general secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China (CPC).
The authorities will make the banking, securities and insurance industries more competitive and strengthen financial regulation to forestall and resolve risks. His words were part of his keynote address to the 17th National Congress of the CPC.
Zhuang Jian is a senior economist with the Asian Development Bank in Beijing.
He said "All the remarks on macroeconomic regulation show that the direction of regulation will not change,"
For example, Zhuang said Transfer payments should help resolve the problem of unbalanced income distribution.
He went on to say that while China's economy steams ahead, the market must learn how to ward off potential risks.
"The capital market, although being modernized, remains a new one (compared with those in developed economies), and is rather fragile," he said.
"Meanwhile, there will also be risks and lessons to be learned from the international experience to forestall them."
Hu's remarks on the fiscal reforms have attracted much attention. They are expected to bring more balance to revenues between central and local governments. Analysts said the move could have an impact on economic stability and the well-being of the public.
Ma Hongman is a Shanghai-based economist.
He said "A big problem in this respect is the local governments' drive to sell land to increase their fiscal income,"
Local governments have been accused of pushing up housing prices nationwide by transferring land use rights to developers on a large scale, he said.
"They can get handsome income from transfers and other development-related taxes."
Local governments are eager to sell land because of their shortage of revenue sources, Ma said.
Since the 1994 fiscal sharing reform, local governments have seen a decreasing portion of the national revenues, experts have said.
Ma said that if this arrangement were allowed to continue, it would not be easy for the central government to implement its tightening measures. Instead, he said "local governments would say they lacked the money to ensure the proper management of local affairs".
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