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China to focus on more efficient, better quality consumption

2020/11/27 8:39:40   source:Global Times

China will promote consumption across both cities and rural areas with several measures to be released over the next 12 months aimed at accelerating the country’s consumption efficiency and boosting the economy, officials said at a conference on Thursday.

Wang Bingnan, Vice Minister of Commerce, attended the meeting and outlined the government’s agenda.

Local trade and commerce departments, at all levels of government, will spare no effort to prevent the spread of COVID-19 maintaining economic order, strengthening urban consumption, while also expanding rural consumption. This comes on the back of China’s 14th Five-Year Plan (2021-2026).

The growth of higher quality goods and services will assist the recovery of the consumer market, targeted development, and improve people's livelihood, officials said.

A more efficient Chinese economy will focus on four principles:

First, expand consumption across both urban and rural areas. With measures such as upgrading commercial zones and promoting rural consumption using eCommerce platforms, China will seek to cultivate international consumption hubs in selected cities.

Second, accelerate the rate of consumption for emerging goods and service categories. Commodities like vehicles, home appliances and furniture, made in both China and overseas, are included. Services including catering and other consumer-focused segments will also be a central focus.

Third, integrate traditional and innovative economic sectors. Innovative consumption refers to encouraging consumption by new methods including remote working and livestreamed shopping, which has played a significant role in driving up consumption during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Fourth, build a safer consumer environment. Authorities will focus on preventing and controlling COVID-19 and ensuring regular market supply.

China's consumer price index, a main gauge of inflation, rose by 0.5 percent on a yearly basis in October, narrowing from the 1.7-percent rise in September according to data published by the National Bureau of Statistics. Consumer inflation eased to the lowest level since 2009 in October partly due to falling food prices.

China's economy grew by 4.9 percent year-on-year in the third quarter. The country is expected to be the only major economy to record growth this year, according to several international organizations. The International Monetary Fund forecasts that China's GDP will expand by 1.9 percent during 2020.

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