CHINA Highlights of Chinese Premier's press conference


Highlights of Chinese Premier's press conference

People's Daily app

11:21, March 15, 2019

Chinese Premier Li Keqiang meets reporters from home and abroad at a news conference on Friday after the conclusion of the annual session of China's national legislature. Here are the highlights from the event.

-China is determined to implement larger tax, fee cuts

Premier Li said Friday that the country is determined to implement larger scale tax and fee cuts this year as a key countermeasure against downward economic pressure.

The move is expected to deliver a dividend of nearly two trillion yuan (about 297 billion U.S. dollars) to the companies.

"We are going to cut value-added tax rates for manufacturing and other basic sectors, as well as for small and medium-sized companies, the largest providers of jobs in our country, in a meaningful way," he said.

"This will create a more enabling environment for companies and in effect cultivate our tax sources."

Noting that the reform requires exceptional courage and determination, Li said the government must live on a tight budget given the drop in fiscal revenues.

"This is not something taking an overdraft on our future, but nurturing a better tomorrow," he said.  


Premier Li Keqiang answers questions of reporters at a news conference for the second session of the 13th National People's Congress in Beijing on March 15, 2019. (Photo: People's Daily)

-China to prepare rules in line with foreign investment law

China will introduce a series of regulations and documents in accordance with the foreign investment law to protect the legitimate rights and interests of foreign investors, Premier Li Keqiang said.

Li underscored efforts to make the complaint mechanism open, transparent and effective.

China's national legislature on Friday passed the foreign investment law at the closing meeting of its annual session. The law will become effective on Jan. 1, 2020.

The law will offer better legal support to the protection and attraction of foreign investment, as well as regulate government behaviors, Li said.

-China will not let economic indicators slide out of proper ranges

China's adoption of a GDP target range this year is consistent with the government's determination of not allowing major economic indicators to slide out of the proper ranges, Premier Li Keqiang said. 

The 6-6.5 percent GDP growth target for 2019 is compatible with the GDP expansion of 6.6 percent achieved last year, adding that the new target has sent a message of stability to the market.

The 6.6-percent GDP growth rate in 2018 did not come by easily, and the 6-6.5 percent target is going to be a growth on top of a very large base figure, according to Li. "Keeping steady growth of China's economy in itself is an important progress."

Li said China has policy room reserved for dealing with possible uncertainties this year such as raising the deficit-to-GDP ratio, or using other instruments like required reserve ratios and interest rates.


Premier Li Keqiang answers questions of reporters at a news conference for the second session of the 13th National People's Congress in Beijing on March 15, 2019. (Photo: People's Daily)

-China calls for continued DPRK-U.S. dialogue

China called for continued dialogue, especially between the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) and the United States, to eventually resolve the Korean peninsula issue, Premier Li Keqiang said.

-Premier Li urges China, Russia to double trade

China and Russia should exhaust all means possible to double their trade value, said Li. 

Bilateral trade exceeded 100 billion U.S. dollars last year despite sagging global trade growth, Li said, calling on both sides to consolidate the achievement.

-Good outcomes hoped for China-U.S. trade consultations

Good outcomes are hoped to be delivered out of the economic and trade consultations between China and the United States, Premier Li Keqiang said. China hopes the talks will deliver win-win results and mutual benefits. 

China and the united states have become closely intertwined through years of development and cooperation, it is neither realistic nor possible to decouple the two economies, he said.

"I believe we need to continue to follow the principles of cooperation instead of confrontation, mutual respect, equality, and mutual benefits to advance bilateral relations, including economic and trade ties, to deliver concrete benefits to people of the countries," he said.

China has confidence that the two peoples have the wisdom and capability to diffuse and manage their differences to pursue steady and sound development of China-U.S. relationship, he added.

-Chinese government did not and will not ask companies to engage in spying

The Chinese government did not and will not ask Chinese companies to spy on other countries, Premier Li Keqiang said. Such kind of action is not consistent with the Chinese law and is not how China behaves.


A People's Daily reporter asks questions. 

-China to further cut financing cost for small, micro firms

China will further cut the financing cost for small and micro firms by another one percentage point this year, Premier Li said.

Serving the real economy is the bounden duty of the financial sector, Li said at a press conference after the conclusion of the annual session of China's national legislature.

-China to strengthen intellectual property protection

China will enhance the protection of intellectual property, Premier Li said. 

Li proposed to make revisions to relevant laws on intellectual property protection and introduce a punitive compensation mechanism, to ensure that all infringements are dealt with once they are found, and such actions have no where to hide.

-Mainland willing to issue more preferential policies for Taiwan compatriots

Premier Li Keqiang said the Chinese mainland intends to introduce more preferential policies for Taiwan compatriots. It is to ensure that they will enjoy the same treatment as the mainland people when they work, study, live and do business on the mainland.

The mainland has previously introduced 31 measures for promoting cross-Strait economic and cultural exchanges, which must be fully delivered, and new measures should be introduced as well, he noted.


"When people on both sides of the Strait enjoy the same development opportunities and come closer to each other, the cross-Strait relationship will grow stronger and make more solid progress," Li said.

He reiterated that the mainland will continue to adhere to the one-China principle and the 1992 Consensus, oppose "Taiwan independence," and promote the peaceful development of cross-Strait relations and peaceful reunification of our motherland.  

-China to ensure creation of over 11 million new urban jobs in 2019

Premier Li Keqiang said Friday the country will ensure the creation of more than 11 million new urban jobs this year.

"In actual practice, our goal is to generate the same amount of job opportunities as we did last year, which is over 13 million," he said.

He noted that the tax and fee cutting measures under the fiscal policy and the lowering of the real interest rates under the monetary policy are all designed to ensure employment.

Li said the country will work to ensure employment of college graduates, whose number will reach a new high of 8.34 million this year. It will prevent zero-employment families and provide more policy support to companies that hire more people.

Li also underlined the employment of rural migrant workers, whose population reaches more than 280 million and is still increasing.

(With input from Xinhua)

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