Chinese goods take major shift ‘Made in China’ to ‘Created in China’

BEIJING, Dec. 21 (INP): China will develop into a manufacturing powerhouse, with a shift from “Made in China” to “Created in China”, it was announced here.

According to Chinese state-run news agency Xinhua, the world’s second-largest economy is setting sail toward a new phase of development with Xi Jinping at the helm.

The Chinese economy will focus on quality, a shift from the rapid growth the country has been known for over the past decades since the reform and opening up policy was introduced.

At the country’s most important annual meeting on economic work, senior leaders said China’s economy will be characterized by more innovative manufacturing, a more secure financial system, a more open and green economy, more affordable housing and better life for the people.

To achieve the goal, Xi Jinping Thought on Socialist Economy with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era will be the key, said a statement released after the Central Economic Work Conference concluded Wednesday.

The three-day conference was attended by President Xi, who is also general secretary of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee and chairman of the Central Military Commission.

This year’s Central Economic Work Conference came after the CPC’s twice-a-decade national congress in October, which drew a blueprint for China’s development over the next 30-plus years.

The conference, which reviewed China’s economic performance over the past five years and mapped out plans for 2018, was special also because 2018 marks the 40th anniversary of China’s reform and opening up policy, which has turned the country into the world’s second-largest economy.

China’s economy is firming, with its GDP expanding 6.9 percent year on year in the first three quarters, and 6.8 percent in the third quarter, the ninth straight quarter for China to see economic growth of at least 6.7 percent, all adding to evidence the economy is on a steady footing.

The World Bank on Tuesday raised its forecast for China’s economic growth in 2017 to 6.8 percent, up from the 6.7 percent it projected in October, citing stronger personal consumption and foreign trade.

Xi Jinping Thought on Socialist Economy with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era has taken shape, said the statement.

The tone-setting meeting described the thought as the “theoretical crystallization” of the past five years of practice in pushing forward China’s economic development, the “latest fruit” of socialist political economy with Chinese characteristics, and the “extremely precious spiritual wealth” of the CPC and the country.

According to the statement, President Xi’s thought is mainly based on the new development philosophy, which was put forward by Xi in 2015 and features innovative, coordinated, green, open and shared development.

Under the thought, people are put first in development, while efforts are made to adapt to, manage and steer the “new normal.” The market plays the decisive role and the government plays its role better, and supply-side structural reform constitutes the main line of economic work.

The meeting also outlined strategies to win what central authorities have called “the three tough battles,” namely preventing and defusing major risks, targeted poverty alleviation and tackling pollution.

China will maintain a hardline stance on irregular and illegal activities in the financial industry to forestall risks.

China’s rapidly expanding financial industry is being placed under greater regulatory scrutiny as authorities step up efforts to curb widespread malfeasance in the sector to guard against risks.

To ensure stable economic growth while averting financial risks accumulated over years of credit binge, China has decided to maintain a prudent and neutral monetary policy in 2018.

“Prudent monetary policy should be kept neutral, the floodgates of monetary supply should be controlled, and credit and social financing should see reasonable growth,” said the statement.

For the battle against poverty, policymakers pledged to work to ensure the quality of poverty reduction efforts under current standards, and focus on helping special groups and eradicating abject poverty.

Pollution control will also be a key battlefield, with authorities aiming for a significant reduction in major pollutant emissions and improvement in the overall environment.

As the major driver and stabilizer of the global economy, China will push forward a new pattern of all-around opening up to pursue mutual benefits with the rest of the world, according to the statement.

China will increase imports and cut import tariffs on some products to promote balanced trade, it said.

Free trade zone pilot areas will be expanded. Effective guidance and support will be given to outbound direct investment.

The country will also push for nationwide implementation of a pre-establishment national treatment system as well as a negative list that determines where foreign participation is prohibited or limited.

The negative list will become shorter and shorter, it said, adding that the country will improve laws and regulations on foreign investment and enhance protection of intellectual property rights.

Chinese leaders have reiterated that the country will not close its door to the world, and that the door will only become more and more open.

INP/J/AH/LK