Balanced growth marks 5-year plan, Hu says

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 02 January, 2011, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 02 January, 2011, 12:00am

Balanced and sustainable economic development will be the main theme of the next five-year plan, President Hu Jintao says.

In a gathering with political advisers from the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference yesterday, Hu said strengthening macroeconomic controls, increasing domestic demand and maintaining price stability would be among priorities this year, which would mark the start of the latest five-year plan.

Hu said the mainland would face various challenges this year, including a complicated economic environment, a weak foundation for stable growth in grain production and rural income, economic restructuring, environmental pressures, and the need to improve people's livelihood and maintain social stability.

Xinhua also outlined the government's aims in a New Year commentary stating the leadership's endeavours to improve people's livelihoods and promote social equity in 2011.

'China ... is prepared to further deepen reforms in education, health care, housing, public cultural services and enhance investment in people's livelihoods in the new year,' the commentary said.

'More attention ... will be given to protecting the legal rights of China's vulnerable groups and ordinary workers, as well as fulfilling the general public's expectations for a better life.'

The latest issue of the Communist Party's magazine Qiushi, published yesterday, carried excerpts of a speech by Hu made in the plenary session of the party's central committee last October, where the outline of the next five-year plan was approved.

Hu said the new five-year plan would seek equitable distribution of wealth and co-ordinated sustainable development, maintaining a balance between economic development and population, resource and environmental constraints.

But the Xinhua commentary noted that the coming five to 10 years would mark a more difficult phase of China's reforms, which will be marked by the interweaving of short-term and long-term problems, structural and systemic problems, and domestic and international challenges.

'That means China will be faced with a more urgent and challenging task in transforming its economic growth mode, improving people's livelihoods and safeguarding social stability,' the article said.

The blueprint's full version will be unveiled at the annual National People's Congress in March.

Zhang Ping, head of the National Development and Reform Commission, the planning agency, earlier said specific targets for the country's economic growth, economic restructuring, consumer prices, improvement of people's lives, and environmental protection including reductions of carbon emissions would be set out in the full version of the 12th five-year plan.