Risks under control despite slower growth

Source:Global Times Published: 2019/3/5 21:13:40

China has set its 2019 GDP growth target at 6 to 6.5 percent and announced a major tax cut. Foreign firms will be "treated as equals" with Chinese competitors. Chinese Premier Li Keqiang's annual Government Work Report to the National People's Congress on March 5 has provided key data and measures for the world to observe China's economic trends in 2019.  

Li stressed key issues without skirting around problems, proposed feasible and reliable solutions, providing a solid guarantee for the country's future steady growth in the transition period.

The continued economic slowdown mirrors the reality of the country's overall socio-economic outlook. With profound structural adjustment, China has started to pursue quality rather than scale expansion or growth rate. Despite slowing economic growth, Chinese people's living standards have drastically improved in health, education, food safety, environment and tourism. 

Vagaries of global economic conditions have resulted in uncertainties in Chinese economy since 2018. It remains unknown whether the China-US trade war will end this year. However, with a one-year adjustment, China has an unwavering determination and apparent ability to adapt to the trade war and deepen opening-up.

Due to China's large economic volume, the country will achieve the world's biggest actual economic increase if it can reach the lower growth rate of 6 percent in 2019. China's economic potential is way beyond other big economies and Chinese people have a strong willingness for a better life. No external uncertainty will stop China's further development.

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Monday the US and China were "on the cusp" of a deal to end the trade war. Nonetheless, some views inside Washington neglect the negotiation breakthrough and insist in pressuring Beijing.

Mutability and hesitation are two major features of the US attitude towards trade, but they haven't affected China's attitude. China has been pursuing a win-win outcome in resolving China-US trade disputes fairly, and has always prepared for the worst. With rationality and calmness, China will actively solve problems and calmly cope with risks.

During the ongoing two sessions, it is worthwhile to assess China's economic trajectory. 

First, China is a pragmatic country. Perhaps because it suffered bitter consequences during the Great Leap Forward and the Cultural Revolution, today's economic and social policies are more reality-based and strike a balance between short-term demands and long-term interests. China views reform and opening-up as the main driving force for economic upgrade and stresses development and stability. 

Second, the largest economic restructuring since reform and opening-up have achieved initial results. The concepts of the Chinese people are changing in accordance. China's sustainable development will carry on with a more solid manner and Chinese society is better at resisting risks.

Third, China's economic transition is generally smooth. Social chaos and economic shock are always potential risks of such a transition. The success of China's economic transition has avoided many social woes and the fundamental reason is the leadership of the Communist Party of China. China's system has minimized the interest competition from within and pushed forward the implementation of people-oriented policy objectives. It also enables the country to handle strategic risks in a better manner.

Looking at 2019, we can safely predict that despite many difficulties, all the economic and social risks are well under control. The biggest uncertainty seems to come from China-US trade tensions, but it constitutes a small portion in the overall development of China. 

Some Chinese tend to complain about their country, but the overall confidence of Chinese society is crystal clear. The lives of the Chinese people are improving year by year, and nothing can reverse this trend.


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