Government looking to speed recovery of China’s economy

The Chinese government is implementing a series of stimulus packages to bolster the economy hit by the pandemic and the slowdown in the global economy, according to the country’s top economic regulator.

The National Development and Reform Commission’s Meng Wei said the foundation for economic recovery “is not solid, and the nation is currently at a critical juncture in pursuit of an economic rebound”.

Meng said that China will push to expand effective investment, encourage consumption and ease the red tape burden on organisations.

One of the initiatives to boost China’s economy will be the speeding of key projects funded by the 300 billion yuan ($42.75 billion) policy bank bonds announced in mid-2022 and promote the use of the new 300 billion yuan fund earmarked for infrastructure spending, she added.

The spokeswoman said the nation is planning to introduce new policy measures to promote consumption recovery and bolster the development of private businesses.

Meng’s remarks came after the State Council, the country’s Cabinet, recently announced 19 follow-up measures to the policy package for stabilizing the economy, including a new quota of 300 billion yuan in policy-backed and developmental financial tools. These come on top of a package of 33 measures unveiled in May.

The government has introduced a series of policy measures this year to help counter the pressures created by shrinking demand, weakening expectations, fresh Covid-19 outbreaks and a downturn in the property sector.

The latest statistics show that China’s economy performed better than expected in August, with an improvement in key indicators of industrial production, consumption and investment.

Growth in China’s industrial output and retail sales accelerated to 4.2% and 5.4% respectively in August from a year earlier, higher than the July figures, said the National Bureau of Statistics.

Zhou Maohua, an analyst at China Everbright Bank, said the improvement came as China has introduced a series of supportive policies to stabilize growth.

However, Zhou warned that recovery in domestic demand still lags behind recovery in production, and called for steps to drive effective demand and fully implement existing stimulus policies.

In order to facilitate long-term growth, China is looking to strengthen its links to the European Union. This will safeguard supply chains and promote trade and investment with the bloc, according to Shu Jueting, a spokeswoman for the Ministry of Commerce.

She made the remarks after the release of a new report from the European Union Chamber of Commerce in China.

“We have noticed the EU paper stated that it hopes the EU will continue to proactively interact with China and oppose economic decoupling,” Shu said.

“We believe China and the EU are important economic and trade partners to each other, and we should promote pragmatic cooperation based on mutual respect and win-win principles,” she added.


Record number of deals signed at ASEAN expo

The 19th China-ASEAN Expo, which took place recently in Nanning, the capital of South China’s Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region, saw a record number of deals signed.

Some 267 domestic and international deals were agreed, worth more than 400 billion yuan ($57 billion), an increase of 37% on the 2021 event, said Wei Zhaohui, the secretary-general of the China-ASEAN Expo.

A total of 88 face-to-face and online economic and trade events took place across the event, in sectors including high-end metal materials, health, tourism and culture, new green chemical materials and mechanical equipment manufacturing, according to Wei.

Covering 102,000 square meters, this year’s expo attracted 1,653 enterprises from 40 countries, with 5,400 exhibition booths set up. The exhibition hall saw in the region of 25,600 visits per day on average, up 19.2% compared with the last expo.

Since the first China-ASEAN Expo was held in 2004, the event has become a platform for ASEAN enterprises to enter the Chinese market.