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Chief Planner Sets Economic Goals for 2003
China will continue to maintain good economic growth in 2003, Minister in Charge of the State Development Planning Commission (SDPC) Zeng Peiyan said Friday.

Zeng said China had sustained rapid and healthy economic growth despite complicated domestic and international situations since 1998. The Chinese government would focus on realizing the four economic goals set by the 16th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC) next year -- promoting economic growth, increasing employment, stabilizing prices and maintaining a favorable balance of payments.

He made the remarks at the National Planning Meeting which opened in Beijing Friday.

Chinese Premier Zhu Rongji sent a written message to the meeting, saying that the planning section of the government has done an efficient job in improving macro-economic control and promoting sustained, rapid and healthy growth, especially in the areas of expanding domestic demand and optimizing the use and management of money from issuing treasury bonds.

Zeng set forth nine major tasks of running the economy in 2003.The nine tasks were: increasing farmers' incomes; optimizing investment funded by treasury bonds; creating jobs; enhancing industrial competitiveness; development of western areas; restructuring investment systems, pricing, grain and cotton circulation and the management of monopolized industries; further expanding international economic and technological cooperation and exchanges; encouraging consumption; and improving social welfare.

He said next year's economic work would center around economic restructuring. China would encourage, support and guide the development of non-state economic sectors while re-enforcing the state-owned economy. The government would use its investment to lure more private investment into fixed assets so as to secure a steady growth of investment.

He said the government would continue to streamline the process of project approval and strengthen supervision. China would attach priority to utilizing foreign investment to the introduction of advanced technology, management expertise, professional talents and intellects. China would continue to improve the competitiveness of local enterprises and manage to develop a group of competitive multinational enterprises and famous brands.

He said the government would be prompt in detecting and resolving major issues that affected the direction and trend of the economy and keep improving the standard of macro-economic control.

Among those attending the meeting were provincial and local government officials in charge of planning work, officials from various departments of the central government and representatives from large state-owned enterprises.

(Xinhua News Agency December 13, 2002)

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