The Fifth Plenary Session of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee mapped out directions for national economic development in the post-crisis era.
In his report providing economic and social development guidelines for China during the 12th Five-Year Plan period (2011-2015), CPC General Secretary Hu Jintao showed great determination to explore a sustainable economic development model as early as possible, in a bid to overcome the detrimental effects of the global financial crisis on the Chinese economy.
Over the past three decades since its reform and opening-up, China has managed to achieve rapid economic development by means of trade and investment utilizing overseas markets and its own low-cost labor resources. However, the global financial crisis induced by the United States means that sustainable growth requires a new model. The government has vowed to make unremitting efforts to cultivate domestic demand and minimize the negative effects brought about by the slump in the US and European markets and their trade protectionism.
However, circumstances at home and abroad mean that China still faces some huge difficulties in its bid to cultivate much-needed domestic demand.
The main challenge is whether or not China can ensure steady income growth for its large population, especially for those inhabiting the vast rural and underdeveloped inland regions.
Encouragingly, in his report, Hu vowed measures would be introduced to raise the proportion of labor income in the primary distribution of national incomes. It is an explicit signal that the authorities plan to take more effective measures to develop agriculture and the rural economy, so as to raise farmers' incomes. Efforts to push for coordinated and balanced economic development between urban and rural areas will help create more opportunities for income growth and employment.