Facing an extremely complex environment both at home and abroad, the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China with Comrade Xi Jinping at its core, has rallied and led the Chinese people of all ethnic groups to forge ahead. We have moved forward with the five-sphere integrated plan and the four-pronged comprehensive strategy, and made new advances on all fronts of reform, opening up, and socialist modernization.
(The “five-sphere integrated plan” is a plan to promote coordinated economic, political, cultural, social, and ecological advancement.
The “four-pronged comprehensive strategy” is a strategy of comprehensive moves to finish building a moderately prosperous society in all respects, deepen reform, advance law-based governance, and strengthen Party self-governance.)
With grit and determination, we have overcome downward pressure on the economy, avoided a “hard landing,” maintained a medium-high growth rate, and promoted structural upgrading. The economic fundamentals that will sustain long-term growth have been cemented and enhanced.
Despite a fairly big imbalance between government revenue and expenditure, China has led the way in slashing taxes and fees with the aim of using accommodative measures to strengthen the basis for sustained growth.
We have sped up the replacement of old growth drivers. We have done more in carrying out the Internet Plus Initiative, exercised accommodative and prudential regulation, and promoted the extensive application of big data, cloud computing, and the Internet of Things; emerging industries have achieved vigorous growth, and traditional industries have undergone a thorough remodeling.
Advancing supply-side structural reform demands removing barriers to market based allocation of the factors of production and reducing government-imposed transaction costs.
In the global race of scientific and technological innovation, China has shifted place, from following others to keeping pace and even leading the pack in more and more areas. Our country has become a globally recognized fertile ground for innovation and business ventures.
This year will kick off our efforts to put all the guiding principles from the Party’s 19th National Congress into action. It is the 40th anniversary of reform and opening up, and it is a crucial year for securing a decisive victory in building a moderately prosperous society in all respects and for continuing to implement the 13th Five-Year Plan.
In fact it’s always been the case that China’s achievements in development have been made whilst overcoming difficulties. Today, China’s material and technological foundations are much stronger; its industrial system is complete, its market is vast, its human resources are abundant, and its entrepreneurs and innovators are dynamic. We enjoy composite advantages, and all this means that we have the ability and the conditions to achieve higher quality, more efficient, fairer, and more sustainable development.
Although the government finances are improving, government at all levels must keep its belt tightened, keep things as simple as possible, abstain from all excess, and strictly control general expenditures, so that these precious funds are used to add growth drivers for sustaining development and meet people’s most urgent needs.
Reform and opening up was a game-changing move in making China what it is today; it now remains a game-changing move for us to achieve China’s two centenary goals. Standing at a new historic starting point, we must go further in freeing our minds, in deepening reform, and in opening up. We need to give full play to the pioneering drive of the people, and encourage all localities, based on their own conditions, to dare to explore, dare to try things out, and dare to confront the toughest of issues, to keep reform and opening up constantly moving forward.
Stepping up supply-side structural reform. In economic development we need to focus on the real economy. We will continue to cut overcapacity, reduce excess inventory, deleverage, lower costs, and strengthen areas of weakness. We will take big steps to streamline administration and cut taxes and fees, keep improving the business environment, and further energize market entities, to increase the quality of economic growth.
Creating a better business environment will unlock productivity and increase competitiveness. We need to remove barriers, cut red tape, and build even pathways, to energize market entities and bring greater convenience to the people.
We will build a new type of cordial and clean relationship between government and business, and improve mechanisms for entrepreneurs to participate in enterprise-related policy formulation. We will encourage and protect entrepreneurship, boost entrepreneur confidence, and enable private enterprises to reach their maximum potential in the market economy.
We will see that strong protection of property rights and fluid flows of the factors of production enable a great increase in market dynamism and public creativity.
We will, in line with economic growth, do more to directly benefit the people, address the difficulties that affect their lives, and ensure that their basic living needs are met. Our aim is to help people feel more satisfied, happier, and more secure.
We must be clear that houses are for living in, not for speculation. We expect local governments to fulfill their primary responsibility in this respect, and will continue exercising differentiated regulation and put in place robust permanent mechanisms to promote the steady and healthy development of real estate markets.
We will work to ensure that the law is enforced in a strict, procedure-based, impartial, and civil manner. Power cannot be used as one pleases; the exercise of power must be supervised.
Every last achievement in China’s reform and development has been made by doing. To us—all levels of government and all government employees—getting things done for the people is our unquestionable duty; not doing is a dereliction of that duty.