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Straight-talking PM outlines China’s goals for 2021

Beijing will keep its macroeconomic policies in place and accept lower growth in China's economy as a result, Premier Li Keqiang said on Tuesday.
Li Keqiang said China will keep macro policies consistent and targeted, and the government has set a full-year economic growth target of around 5.5%. File photo: Reuters.

(ATF) Earlier today (March 5), the straight-talking Premier Li Keqiang delivered a government work report at the ‘Two Sessions’ in Beijing. The main points are as follows:

Review of last year’s work

  • Major strategic results achieved in epidemic prevention and control;
  • China was the only major economy to achieve positive growth; 2020 GDP growth was 2.3%;
  • Some 11.86 million new jobs created in urban areas.

“There are still weak links in domestic epidemic prevention and control, and the foundation for economic recovery is not yet solid.”

14th Five-Year Plan Main Goals

  • Economic operations remain within a reasonable range;
  • Increase the urbanisation rate of permanent residents to 65%;
  • Average life expectancy increased by one year;
  • The urban surveyed unemployment rate was controlled within 5.5%;
  • The basic pension insurance participation rate should increase to 95%.

Main goals for this year

  • GDP growth of more than 6%;
  • More than 11 million new jobs in urban areas;
  • Consumer prices will rise by about 3%;
  • Reduce energy consumption per unit of GDP by about 3%;
  • Grain production should remain above 1.3 trillion catties (about 7.8 trillion kg);

Some key tasks this year

Finance: This year’s deficit rate is planned to be around 3.2%;

Tax reduction: increase the VAT threshold for small-scale taxpayers from monthly sales of 100,000 yuan to 150,000 yuan;

Cost reduction: average broadband and dedicated line tariffs for SMEs to be reduced by another 10%;

Consumption: Steady increase in bulk consumption such as automobiles and home appliances;

Innovation: Achieve major breakthroughs in key core areas ‘with the spirit of ‘it takes 10 years to build the best sword’;

Rural revitalisation: do a good job in consolidating and expanding the results of poverty alleviation to effectively create rural revitalisation;

Opening up: Promote the early entry into force and implementation of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement, and signing of the China-EU Investment Agreement;

Environmental protection: the clean heating rate in the north to reach 70%;

Education: Take greater strides in education equity;

Medical insurance: The per capita financial subsidy standard for residents’ medical insurance and basic public health funds will be increased by 30 yuan and 5 yuan respectively;

Housing: Solve outstanding housing problems in big cities. Standardise the development of the long-term rental housing market and reduce the burden of rental housing taxes and fees;

Culture and Sports: Carefully organise the Beijing Winter Olympics and Paralympics;

Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan: Perfect systems related to the implementation of the Constitution and Basic Law in the Special Administrative Region.


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Chris Gill

With over 30 years reporting on China, Gill offers a daily digest of what is happening in the PRC.


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