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Press Conference on Economic Situation, Social Development
Officials from the State Development Planning Commission (SDPC) and the State Economic and Trade Commission (SETC) held a press conference Sunday afternoon on nation's economic situation and social development.

Economy Maintains Good Momentum in 2002

China's national economy has maintained a good momentum of fairly rapid growth since the beginning of this year, Zeng Peiyan, minister in charge of the State Development Planning Commission, said on Sunday.

Zeng said this at a press conference held on the sidelines of the ongoing 16th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC), which opened in Beijing Friday and will last for a week.

"This year China's GDP (gross domestic product) is expected to exceed 10 trillion RMB yuan (about US$1.2048 trillion), an increase of some 8 percent compared with last year," said Zeng in his opening remarks. "The total amount of import and export is likely to reach US$600 billion, and contractual foreign direct investment will possibly record a new high of over US$50 billion."

Zeng also described the past 13 years since 1989 as "the best development period in the Chinese history" in which the broad masses of people have gained the most benefits and the society has enjoyed the highest level of stability. "It is really a prosperous golden age," he said.

China's State Sector Reform Achieves Major Advancement

China has embarked on a "road of success with Chinese characteristics" in effectively combining public ownership and market economy and promoting the overall development of the state sector, said Li Rongrong, minister in charge of the State Economic and Trade Commission, on Sunday.

"From the beginning of this year, (China's) state-owned enterprises have continued to maintain a sound development momentum and are expected to make more profits than in the last year," said Li in his opening remarks at a press conference held on the sidelines of the ongoing 16th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC).

From 1989 to 2001, the annual average tax revenues from each state-owned enterprise had surged to 7 million RMB yuan (about US$942,000) from 1 million yuan (US$121,000), the annual per capita labor productivity in state-owned enterprises to 54,772 yuan (US$6,599) from 9,115 yuan (US$1098), and the net value of fixed assets of all state-owned enterprises to 3.9 trillion yuan (US$476 billion) from 703 billion yuan (US$84 billion), said Li.

In the past 13 years, while the total number of state-owned industrial enterprises had dwindled sharply from 102,300 to 46,800, the overall profits they made had increased to 238 billion yuan (US$28 billion) from a mere 74 billion yuan (US$8.9 billion), he added.

Describing the reform of state-owned enterprises as the "most difficult and most challenging central link" of the entire economic restructuring, Li said that this reform would be further deepened in China's pursuit of a new industrialization model with high technological content, good economic returns, low resources consumption, little pollution and efficient use of human resources.

"While continuing to enhance the competitiveness of the state sector, we will also support and guide the non-public sector for a better development in order to create a fine situation in which public and non-public sectors help each other for mutual development," he added.

(People's Daily November 10, 2002)
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