Premier Li Keqiang urged greater efforts to remove barriers, improve support measures and better bring out the effects of the policies at the State Council Executive Meeting on Wednesday.
Li made the remarks after hearing a report on the special inspections on ensuring stability in economic growth, the operation of market entities and employment.
The meeting also decided on policy steps to ensure stable performance of foreign trade and investment and advance opening-up at a higher level.
The meeting noted the recent special inspections carried out by the task forces the State Council sent to 12 provinces regarding the work to maintain steady growth, support market entities and ensure stable employment.
As shown in the inspections, local governments have expedited implementation of the policies set out at the Central Economic Work Conference and in the Government Work Report, and the package of measures for stabilizing economic activity. Many localities have rolled out their support measures, to increase factors sustaining a sound momentum of economic activity and boost market confidence.
Meanwhile, the inspections have also spotted certain problems in some localities such as insufficient and imprecise implementation of policies, a “one-size-fits-all” approach in work, and imposition of arbitrary charges and fines.
“Problems identified in the inspections should be promptly addressed, with experience gained in the process to forestall similar occurrences. All localities need to effectively coordinate COVID-19 response with economic and social development, and return economic activity back to normal as quickly as possible,” Li said.
The meeting noted the still acute downward pressure facing the economy, and the need to effectively coordinate COVID-19 response with economic and social development.
Localities should assume the responsibilities for ensuring people’s livelihood, and have a stronger sense of urgency to further flesh out and implement the policy measures for stable growth, in a bid to further unleash the effects of these policies, achieve a reasonable growth in the second quarter and keep overall economic performance stable.
Localities are urged to swiftly address the problems identified in the inspections. The General Office of the State Council will give feedbacks to localities and departments on the problems found in the inspections, and prominent ones will be circulated for reference. All parties should fully examine the existing problems, draw lesson from them and fix them as quickly as possible.
The General Office will conduct due oversight on the rectification, and launch the internet plus model of inspection to follow up on policy implementation and promote solutions to emerging problems.
The State Council will carry out inspections in provincial regions that were not covered by this round of special inspections during its annual accountability inspections on their work of ensuring stability in economic growth, the operation of market entities and employment.
Localities need to ensure policy implementation based on conditions on the ground. Policy support will be intensified with a special focus on keeping the operation of market entities and payrolls stable and maintaining steady job creation.
All summer grains must be harvested into granary, summer plowing taken forward smoothly and supply of coal-fired power kept stable, to underpin price stability. Efforts will be made to further smooth transport and logistics, and to resolve such problems as partial-capacity production upon resumption and unharmonized production of enterprises on the industrial chains.
Policies and administrative measures unhelpful to shoring up market confidence will be abolished. Concrete efforts will be made to further flesh out each and every policy measure. Localities that have yet to adopt support measures for policy steps to keep economic activity stable and departments yet to issue detailed implementation guidelines must speed up efforts to do so. Competent departments should carefully study the opinions and suggestions raised by relevant parties in the inspections. Policies should be improved wherever necessary.
“To keep major economic indicators within an appropriate range this year, we need to stabilize the output of grains and farmers’ income to secure price stability. We need to maintain stable operation of market entities to ensure stable employment. All this calls for concerted efforts from all sides,” Li said.
The meeting noted that opening-up is China’s basic national policy. Stable foreign trade and investment are critical to overall economic performance and employment. Efforts should be made to open up wider, and more support should be provided while policies to stabilize foreign trade and investment are rolled out.
Working mechanisms for stabilizing foreign trade and investment and ensuring smooth logistics at all levels must be fully utilized, to provide timely, coordinated solutions to difficulties facing foreign trade and foreign-invested enterprises in resumption of full-capacity production and project construction. Guidance will be provided to localities in introducing innovative measures to stabilize foreign trade and investment.
Steady growth and higher quality of foreign trade will be promoted. Policy to process export tax rebates for good-faith enterprises within three working days will be implemented on a time-limited basis. More quality products will be imported.
Efficiency of port loading, unloading, transshipment and customs clearance will be enhanced, and international industrial and supply chains kept stable. Temporary reduction or exemption of port-related charges will be explored.
Free trade arrangements such as the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership and pilot free trade zones will be better leveraged. Overseas warehouse providers will be supported in building smart logistics platforms. Proactive efforts will be made to attract more inflows of foreign investment. Efforts will be made to foster a world-class and market-oriented business environment governed by a sound legal framework, to anchor business expectations.
Stronger policies will be rolled out to support cross-regional relocation and transfer of processing trade. The catalogue of encouraged manufacturing industries for foreign investment in the central and western regions will be expanded.
The role of task forces for serving foreign-invested enterprises will be harnessed, and the mechanism for regular exchanges with foreign-invested enterprises improved, to learn about their difficulties in a timely manner and meet their reasonable needs.
“Opening-up is China’s basic national policy. Stable foreign trade and investment are critical to overall economic performance and employment. The Chinese economy is now deeply integrated into the world. All the measures to ensure stable foreign trade and investment must hit the ground running without delay,” Li said.