Economic control measures unchanged

PUBLISHED : Monday, 21 February, 2005, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 21 February, 2005, 12:00am

But the State Council says it will resort to administrative methods if required

The State Council will continue to make use of economic and legal means to implement its macro-economic control measures, but it will resort to administrative measures if necessary.

The announcement, issued as a set of revised State Council work rules yesterday, comes as Beijing prepares for the third session of the 10th National People's Congress next week.

As part of the economic control measures, the cabinet will expand foreign trade and regional economic co-operation to realise economic growth and stimulate employment opportunities while stabilising commodity prices and the international balance of payment.

Some analysts on the mainland have called on the government to refrain from adopting administrative measures, such as government orders regulating land use, and let the market forces run.

Apart from macro-economic control, the State Council also pledged to strengthen its work on market supervision and create a fair and predictable legal framework to allow the market to operate.

It will also improve social management and enhance the government's ability to deal with contingent situations while strengthening public administration.

'The State Council and all departments have to speed up the reform and fully implement their roles in economic adjustment, market supervision, social administration as well as public service provision,' according to the rules.

The government has to change its role from being a manager of the economy to one that serves the market and creates a better business environment, they said.

The rules reiterated the government's pledge to run the country in accordance with the law.

All major decisions on national investment projects will be discussed and authorised by the State Council plenum or its standing committee, based on public and expert consultations, the rules said.

They reiterated the need to solicit the views of experts or research bodies in making major or strategic policy proposals.

The State Council should also consult the local authorities or hold hearings with the public when making policies affecting local development.

On Saturday, President Hu Jintao told top cadres at a speech at the Central Party School to mark the opening of a new training session that their main work priority was to build a harmonious society. He stressed that party officials must establish an efficient management system capable of dealing with the nation's most serious problems.

In order to maintain political stability and provide Chinese citizens with the opportunity to live safe and happy lives, it was essential to balance the interests of the nation's various social groups and avoid conflicts, Mr Hu said.

Vice-president and Party School president Zeng Qinghong presided over the ceremony. Communist Party Standing Committee members Premier Wen Jiabao , Wu Guanzheng and Li Changchun also attended the event.