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Li highlights central role of consumption
China Daily
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Li highlights central role of consumption

Premier Li Keqiang has underlined efforts to promote the role of consumption as the major driver of economic growth and to expand effective investment in order to boost the confidence of market players, as they play a critical role in stabilizing the economy.

Li made the remark at a recent State Council meeting, during which he was briefed on the work of two task forces sent to 16 provincial-level regions by the State Council to supervise local efforts in the stabilization of economy and policy implementation.

He stressed full implementation of the new development philosophy and efficient efforts to coordinate the country's response to the COVID-19 pandemic with socioeconomic development, saying that both the central and local authorities should be given full play to take the initiative in this work.

Adhering to development is the basis and also the key to solving all problems facing the country, Li said.

He called for multiple measures to be adopted to maintain stable growth, ensure employment and keep the prices of commodities stable, thus keeping the economy operating in a reasonable range and maintaining its stability and growth.

The premier said that while assistance should be provided to help enterprises navigate hardships, it is necessary in the meanwhile to create demand for market players in order to boost their confidence.

To speed up the construction of key projects, Li said that the quota for policy-based and developmental financial instruments can be increased in accordance with local demand, and projects that have started construction in the first half of this year will also be supported.

Policy-based, developmental financial tools are designed to increase financial support for major projects by playing a greater guiding role, without resorting to massive stimulus or excessive money supply.

Earlier this month, the quota for such tools was increased by another 300 billion yuan ($43.31 billion) to better fund major infrastructure projects. Prior to this, 300 billion yuan in total had already been allocated via such instruments, benefiting more than 900 projects, according to the People's Bank of China.

Measures including phased government interest discounts on loans and policy-based financial tools will also be provided for upgrading and renovating equipment in some fields, Li said.

The premier noted that the macro policies have maintained their sustainability over the past years, with no sharp rise in the fiscal deficit or an excessive increase in the money supply.

This reserves policy tools for this year, Li said, calling for efforts to continue formulating and putting into place phased policies to stabilize the economy.

China DailyGu Yetao

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