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Premier Li meets overseas attendees to China Development Forum 2021

Updated: Mar 23,2021 21:30

Premier Li Keqiang met with representatives of overseas attendees to the China Development Forum 2021 via video link in Beijing on March 22.

The attendees included the heads of Fortune Global 500 companies, scholars and experts from global academic institutes, and representatives from major international organizations.

BMW Board of Management Chairman Oliver Zipse, Bridgewater Associates Chairman Ray Dalio, Manulife Financial President Roy Gori, Apple CEO Tim Cook, Prudential CEO Michael A. Wells, Daimler AG Board of Management Chairman Ola Kaellenius, and Francois Bourguignon, emeritus professor of the Paris School of Economics, shared their ideas and posed questions to Premier Li.

When answering a question about China's growth rate and quality, Premier Li said China's economy registered positive growth through arduous efforts last year, despite the severe impact of COVID-19.

Considering the recovering economy, uncertainties in global economic recovery and the smooth transition with the targets of the next year and the year after next, China set the GDP growth target of over 6 percent for this year, Premier Li said.

The target of over 6 percent is not low, and it may be higher in practical operations, he added.

The government is not making a plan, but guiding expectations and emphasizing efforts to stabilize economic fundamentals, the Premier said.

While maintaining steady growth, the government urges high-quality development through sufficient employment, rising residential incomes, an improved ecological environment, a better economic structure and higher labor productivity.

This year, 140 million people will enter the job market in urban areas, indicating a heavy employment pressure. To ensure over 110 million people are employed, the economic growth rate should be maintained within a reasonable range, he said.

A balance should be kept in the developing economy, guaranteeing employment, increasing incomes and stabilizing prices, the Premier said, stressing that economic growth should not be achieved at the cost of high energy consumption and pollution.

Meanwhile, work will be intensified to revitalize market players and improve their profits, push forward urbanization, and unleash huge potential in domestic demands to harness the role of consumption in spurring economic growth.

Opening-up is the only way to China’s development, the Premier said, adding that the Chinese economy has been deeply involved in the world economy since the reform and opening-up policy was implemented more than 40 years ago.

China will further expand its opening-up, and is also glad to achieve win-win and even multi-win results through two-way and multidirectional opening-up, he added.

He also responded to questions on population aging, poverty reduction and education, financial opening-up and green development.

The representatives of overseas attendees said they highly appreciated China’s development achievements, saying that China’s moves to deepen reform and opening-up will bring new opportunities to the development of the global economy.

They expressed their confidence in China’s future development and also are willing to further develop the Chinese market to better achieve mutual benefits in China's course to high-quality development.