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Home >> Opinion
UPDATED: 16:43, September 28, 2005
10 Key words depicting China in '10th Five-Year Plan' period
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China's "10th Five-Year Plan (2001-05)" is going to come to a completely successful end and to greet the "11th Five-Year Plan". Over the past five years, the inspiring ten key words refract the course of China's development and draw a magnificent scroll of pictures showing the Chinese people building their great motherland and encourage us to stride into the "11th Five-Year Plan" period.

Scientific outlook on development: guiding China forward
Background: In creating US$1 worth of GNP (gross national product), the coal, electricity and other energy sources China consumes is 4.3 times that of the United States, 7.7 times that of Germany and of France, and 11.5 times that of Japan; in last year's 9.5 percent GDP growth, over 6 percent came from fixed asset investment; A home-made GMP 3 sold at a price of US$79 per unit, a patent fee of US$45 was taken abroad, the net profits for the Chinese enterprise was only US$1.5.

Measures: 2004 was the first year for an all-round implementation of the scientific concept of development, the all-round, coordinated and sustained "development concept"; the "concept on official achievement" characterized by doing practical things, paying attention to practical results and seeking actual achievement; the "concept on talent" which holds that the human resource is the primary resource and talents exist among the masses of people, the "mass outlook" is expressed in "exercising power for the people, showing concern for the people and seeking benefits for the people" are going step by step into the hearts of the people and are promoting China's development into a brand-new stage.

Progress: The 2005 government work report points out: The growth rate of the general consumer price level is to be kept at 4 percent; agricultural tax is all exempted, poor students in rural primary and secondary schools are provided with free textbooks, miscellaneous education-related fees are paid for them and living allowance are given them for staying on campus", the central finance arranges 10.9 billion yuan of funds to support reemployment, and 3 billion yuan used to solve coal mine safety production´┐Ż´┐Ż. "These measures that attach importance to people's livelihood enjoy the ardent support of the people.

Macro-control: boosting the rapid & sound development of China's economy
Background: Since 2003, there have emerged some unwholesome factors in China's economy, such as the over-rapid growth of fixed asset investment, and all-round strained situation of coal, electricity and oil transportation. At the important juncture of economic development, the Party Central Committee and the State Council, judging the hour and sizing up the situation, decided to tighten macro-control and concentrate efforts on solving the aforementioned contradictions and problems and unhealthy tendencies in economy.

Measures: 2004 was an important year in which China strengthened and improved macro-control. On April 26 that year, General Secretary Hu Jintao of the CPC Central Committee chaired a conference of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee to study and solve the outstanding contradictions and problems in economic operation. Later, the state adopted a series of measures for macro-control and often used economic and legal means to strictly guard the two gates of credit and land.

Progress: The macro-control measures taken by the central authorities are practical and effective and the means of regulation and control are more mature. From the method of control to the degree of effort, the central authorities have from beginning to end grasped the initiative in economic operation, thus avoiding ups and downs in the Chinese economy. The national economy continues to keep steady and rapid economic growth, the internal motive power for boosting economic growth remains rather strong. At present, we should pay close attention to some problems existing in economic operation, continue to coordinate various macrocosmic policies, further consolidate and develop the results of macro-control and maintain the good momentums of socio-economic development.

Agricultural tax exempted: "Imperial grain, state tax" becomes thing of the past
Background: Since 2000, China's grain cultivated area has decreased year by year, grain yield has all along been low, the nation's grain sown area dropped from 1.7billion mu (15 mu = one hectare) in 1998 to less than 1.5 billion mu in 2003, the "short leg" phenomenon of rural areas has become increasingly serious in urban and rural development.

Measures: The Party Central Committee and the State Council have always regarded the issue of "san nong" (agriculture, rural area and farmer) as the most important thing in various fields of work. In the 2004-2005" period, the State Council has in the two years released the "No.1 document" on the "san nong" issue. On March 5, 2005, Premier Wen Jiabao said in his government work report: Agricultural tax will be totally exempted nationwide in 2006, the originally set objective of abolishing agricultural tax in five years can now be realized in three years, the accumulative funds of transfer payment earmarked by the central finance for rural tax-for-fee reform has touched 183.5 billion yuan.

Progress: Agricultural tax is totally exempted, various kinds of irrational burden on farmers are cancelled, thoroughly changing the 2,000 year-old history in which peasants paid "imperial grain state tax". Up till now, 28 provinces nationwide have totally exempted the levy of agricultural tax, Backed by the policy of "taking less, granting more", the situation of years-long stagnation of farmers' income has been changed. In 2004, per-capita net income of farmers reached 2,936 yuan, up 6.8 percent, the highest since 1997. The year 2004 saw the most increased grain production since the founding of New China in 1949.

Tackling difficult reform-related problems: Striving for new breakthrough in major fields
Background: Problems cropped up in China's economy in the past two years, such as unplanned investment expansion, shortage of energy sources, and low growth and efficiency, are related with the defects of structural mechanisms. Premier Wen Jiabao, in his 2005 government work report, stressed the need to unswervingly deepen reforms.

Measures: The State Council designated 2005 as the year for tackling difficult reform-related problems and released the opinion on deepening economic restructuring in 2005. This encompassing: Continuing to deepen rural reform, carrying on the structuring adjustment of ownership, steadily carrying out reforms to finance, taxation, investment and price, carrying out reforms to science, technology, culture, and public health systems in an orderly way, and enhancing efforts for reforming the government administrative and management system.

Progress: Since the beginning of 2005, reform in separating stock rights, reform to the exchange rate formation mechanism, reform to the investment system, state-owned enterprise reform, rural tax-for-fee reform, reform of monopoly industries and other major reforms in a series of key areas have been pushed forward at an accelerated pace, reforms in the fields of employment, social security, education, medical service and other sectors that concern the vital interests of the common people have been placed in a prominent position, the clarion has been sounded for the battle of tackling difficult reform-related problems.

Employment: Foundation of people's livelihood
Background: The employment and reemployment issue has always been a serious topic confronting China, which has become increasingly prominent during the "10th Five-Year Plan" period. The registered rate of unemployment in China rose from 2.9 percent in 1995 gradually to 4.3 percent in 2003.

Measures: Employment is "the foundation of people's livelihood", the state has put forward a proactive employment policy and has continuously intensified efforts for employment and reemployment work. In 2004 alone, central finance appropriated 8.3 billion yuan of funds for subsidizing reemployment, up 76.6 percent over the previous year; and arranged 12.745 billion yuan of subsidy funds for guaranteeing the basic daily necessities of laid-off workers and staff from state-owned enterprises; In order to raise the standard of basic old-age pension for enterprise retirees, central finance arranged special transfer payment of funds worth 2.25 billion yuan. The state has stipulated that the problem left over from history, that concerns laid-off workers from state-owned enterprises will be basically resolved in most regions of the country in 2005, in the future, enterprises' cut down the number of staff will be step by step directly incorporated into unemployment insurance or "the living security for urban residents".

Progress: During the "10th Five-Year Plan" period, China's urban employment situation has been improved, taking an upward trend in the annual newly increased number of employees. From 2001 to August this year, the newly added number of employees in China's cities and towns exceeded 42 million people. Simultaneously with steady increase in work posts, registered rate of unemployment in China's cities and towns was always kept within 5 percent.

Constructing a public health framework: putting people's health in first place
Background: In the spring of 2003, China was hit by a sudden occurrence of SARS (Severe acute respiratory syndrome). The spread of SARS was a concentrated exposure of the problem concerning the inharmonious economic and social development in China.

Measures: To counter the epidemic of SARS, the Party Central Committee and the State Council put people's health and life safety in the first place, conducted timely studies and arrangements for the work of preventing and treating SARS and formulated "Regulations on Dealing with Emergent Public Health Events". The central government timely adjusted the focus of its work and financial investment and, proceeding from the prevention and treatment of SARS, actively established the framework of public health.

Progress: In the past two years, focusing on the prevention and control of diseases and putting emphasis on rural areas, China has strengthened the construction of a national public health system, it mainly grasped disease prevention and control network construction at the provincial, municipal (prefecture) and county levels, set up early-warning and emergency mechanisms for dealing with sudden public health incidents. By the end of 2004, disease prevention and control centers at 1,410 county levels and 250 provincial, municipal (prefecture) levels had been set up by and large, construction of 290 first-aid centers had started one after another. According to plan, a disease prevention and control system will be established in 2005 in an all-round way, construction of a medical treatment and cure system for dealing with sudden public health events will be basically completed.

Safety production: Top priority to people's lives
Background: Since the latter half of 2004, four coalmine accidents each taking a death toll of over one hundred people have occurred one after another in the country, showing the severe safety situation of coal mines. Statistics from the State Administration for Safety Production Supervision and Management show that 2004 saw 3,639 coalmine accidents in China, causing the death of 6,027 people.

Measures: Along with growing demand for coal and other energy sources, the problem of safety production in coalmines and other industries has been severe in recent years, posing serious threats to employees' life safety. The State Council has adjusted the safety production supervision and management system and set up the State Safety Production Supervision and Management Administration. The 2004 Government Work Report pointed out the need to designate coalmine safety as a priority task, to perfect coalmine safety supervision and management system and mechanism and increase input for safety installations in coalmines. According to plan, the problem concerning coalmine safety production will be basically resolved in the three years.

Progress: In 2005, the State Safety Production Supervision and Management Administration has released in four groups the name list of 8,648 coalmines and coal pits that have suspended production for rectification, those failing to live up to the required standard for rectification by the year-end will be closed down, the 3 billion yuan of the central budgeted funds for coalmine safety renovation projects has completely been arranged.

Constitution revision: China speeds up legislation pace
Background: On March 14, 2004, more than 2,900 deputies to the Second Session of the 10th National People's Congress (NPC), shouldering the great trust placed on them by nearly 1.3 people, solemnly voted through amendment to the Constitution of the People's Republic of China at the imposing Great Hall of the People, the fourth revision to the current Constitution.

Measures: Perfecting the land requisition system, protecting private property right, stressing the harmonious development of material civilization, spiritual civilization and political civilization, and establishing a sound social security system: The constitutional revision this time highlighted the "people first" principle.

Progress: With constitution revision as the indication, laws bearing on people's vital interests were either put on the agenda, or smoothly passed: The adoption of the law on traffic security, the repeated deliberations on the draft of the law on real rights. During the "10th Five-Year Plan" period, China has increasingly accelerated the pace related to its democratic legal system. In 2004 alone, the NPC Standing Committee discussed drafts of decision on 33 laws, law interpretations and law-related issues, and passed 25 of them, thus providing legal guarantees for further economic and social development.

Building a harmonious society: Creating a new phase in cause of socialism with Chinese characteristics
Background: The Fourth Plenum of the 16th CPC Central Committee in 2004 clearly stated that as a ruling party, the CPC should mobilize all positive factors extensively and fully, and constantly enhance its capability in building a harmonious socialist society. This is the first time in the Party's document that the building of a harmonious socialist society was placed in a prominent position in parallel with economic construction, political construction and cultural construction.

Measures: In February 2005, the CPC Central Committee called on Party committees and governments at all levels to put the construction of a harmonious socialist society in an important position of the overall work, establish an effective leadership mechanism and a work mechanism, conscientiously study and solve major issues and outstanding problems, and constantly understand and grasp the characteristics and laws of the construction of a harmonious society under the new situation.

Progress: Presentation of the "harmonious society" idea will bring a host of new challenges and new changes to the future development road of the Chinese society, previous related laws, regulations and policies as well as those thoughts and practices contrary to "social harmony" shall be adjusted and updated.

Entry into WTO: Let world people have personal experience of China
Background: At 23:38 on November 10, 2001, after 15 years of arduous negotiations, the Doha Conference of the World Trade Organization (WTO) discussed and passed the decision on China's accession to the WTO. At that moment, there was a burst of applause hailing China's success.

Measures: Since its joining the WTO, the Chinese government has sorted out and revised over 2,300 laws and regulations, made public all WTO-related legal documents, various local governments have also sorted out, revised or abrogated over 190,000 local regulations, rules and policy measures, and drastically reduced tariffs. China has further opened the fields of service trade and greatly improved conditions for foreign businesses' entry into China.

Progress: While comprehensively and conscientiously carrying out its commitments, China has gained more and better opportunities for participating in economic globalization. China's import and export trade volumes shot up from an excess of US$500 billion in 2001 to US$1,150 billion in 2004, and its ranking jumped from sixth to the third largest trading country in the world. China has drawn strength from the world economy for its development, and has also made its own contribution to the sound development of the global economy.

By People's Daily Online

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