Motions, proposals at two sessions focus on high-quality development of vital manufacturing sector
Motions, proposals at two sessions focus on high-quality development
Published: Mar 06, 2023 10:19 PM
Manufacturing equipment of semiconductor products Photo: VCG

Manufacturing equipment of semiconductor products Photo: VCG

Shares of companies involved in 6G, solar energy, shipyards, and instruments and gauges rose on Monday on Chinese stock markets, in response to the Government Work Report which put an emphasis on pooling resources to achieve breakthroughs in core technologies in manufacturing amid national efforts toward high-quality development.

The nation's commitment to further its manufacturing prowess was also underlined by President Xi Jinping's remarks on sticking to the development of manufacturing, as he took part in a deliberation with his fellow deputies from the delegation of Jiangsu Province, at the first session of the 14th National People's Congress, China's national legislature, on Sunday. Xi is a deputy of the delegation. 

Xi, also general secretary of the Communist Party of China Central Committee and chairman of the Central Military Commission, on Sunday afternoon said that the manufacturing industry is an indispensable sector for China at all times, and China will strive to develop high-end manufacturing to realize all-around improvement, and provide full support for its development. 

Shares of solar companies rose by 2.72 percent on Monday, while the benchmark Shanghai composite index finished the day 0.19 percent lower. Shipyards' shares were up 1.91 percent and instruments rose by 1.25 percent. 

China has the world's most complete industrial chain and the most developed transportation and logistics system, with 41 major industrial categories, 207 medium-sized industrial categories and 666 small industrial categories. Still, the world's manufacturing has some weak links amid anti-globalization headwinds and efforts by the US to decouple from and crack down on China. 

Bearing economic security in mind, deputies and advisors attending the ongoing two sessions brought motions and proposals to further advance China's manufacturing, especially with regard to preventing the issue of strangleholds amid rising external uncertainties.

Zhong Zheng, a deputy to the 14th National People's Congress and an executive with Chinese home appliance maker Midea, suggested the country roll out further supportive fiscal policies, encourage the use of domestic products and technologies, incentivize technological breakthroughs, and introduce international talent to work on precision reducers, a vital part for industrial robots. This component is currently dominated by foreign companies and its supply faces the risks of a stranglehold.

Hu Chengzhong, another deputy and chairman of the Zhejiang-based Delixi Group, an electric appliance maker, suggested that the country should channel more capital, fiscal and policy support to advance the manufacturing of precision machine tools and advance the import substitution process.

Recent data showed that only six in 100 high-end numerical control machines are made in China, posing a threat to supply chain security in core sectors of manufacturing, Hu said. 

Zhou Maohua, an economist at Everbright Bank, told the Global Times on Monday that China regards modern manufacturing as a means to generate wealth and guarantee the nation's status as a strong country. 

While efforts to steer manufacturing toward a high-quality path have been years in practice, this year is expected to see still larger, targeted policy support to the sector, Zhou said. "It is expected that efforts to retain the percentage of manufacturing while supporting technological breakthroughs in core and vital sectors of manufacturing will be the co-drivers for development in the next phase."

In 2020, Chinese manufacturing's added value accounted for 28.5 percent of the global total.

It is expected that efforts to stabilize the supply chain, support the steady upgrading of manufacturing and promote the transformation of the industrial chain will work in a synchronized fashion, Zhou said. "High-tech manufacturing and equipment manufacturing will continue to grow quickly."

The February purchasing managers index (PMI), which tracks the performances of major global economies, by the China Federation of Logistics & Purchasing showed a continued recovery. It was near the threshold dividing expansion and contraction, underlining a global trend toward stabilization and recovery.

The reading, at 49.9, was 0.7 points higher than in January, and it marked the second straight month in which the reading improved from the previous month. 

Experts said that the fast recovery of China's manufacturing sector has become the main force in helping the global manufacturing sector to gain an initial foothold in its recovery.

Xu Hongcai, deputy director of the Economic Policy Commission at the China Association of Policy Science, told the Global Times on Monday that the global manufacturing sector's recovery trend is uneven and fledging, but manufacturing in Asia turned in the best performance and China is the spotlight, fueling a global recovery, Xu said.