China to introduce more policies to restore, spur consumption
Updated: July 18, 2023 19:59 Xinhua

BEIJING, July 18 -- China will formulate and introduce more effective policies for restoring and expanding consumption as soon as possible, said the country's top economic planner on Tuesday.

The policies will center on stabilizing consumer spending on big-ticket items, promoting consumption of automobiles and electronic products, boosting consumption in rural areas, and improving the consumption environment, said Jin Xiandong, an official with the National Development and Reform Commission.

"Consumption is becoming a primary force driving the country's economic growth," Jin said, stressing that promoting consumption is the key to the current recovery and expansion of domestic demand.

In the first half of 2023, China's retail sales of consumer goods hit around 22.8 trillion yuan (about 3.7 trillion U.S. dollars), up by 8.2 percent from a year ago. Consumption in catering and tourism sectors surpassed the pre-pandemic levels, and consumption's contribution to economic growth reached 77.2 percent for the first six months of the year, Jin said.

He also cautioned that consumption capacity and expectations are relatively weak, and the consumption environment needs to be improved, vowing to formulate and implement more policies to spur consumer spending.

"Since the beginning of this year, China has introduced a series of policies on building a high-quality charging infrastructure system and promoting new energy vehicles in rural areas," Jin said, adding that the country will continue to promote the implementation of the policies and make greater efforts to stabilize consumption in key fields.

Efforts should also be made to increase residents' incomes through various channels, stabilize employment and expand more scenarios for consumption, Jin added.

In response to systems and mechanisms that impede consumption, Jin said the country would work with relevant parties to study and formulate policies on creating a safe environment for consumption, improve the management system for product quality and standards, and strengthen supervision over quality and safety of products.

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