Beijing city bosses say Beijing will go all out to make the 2008 Summer Olympic Games a big success.
The pledge was made by Liu Qi, Secretary of the Beijing Municipal Communist Party of China (CPC) Committee, when delivering a work report to the opening ceremony of the 10th municipal congress of the CPC on Thursday morning.
The opening ceremony, which was televised live, was attended by 731 of the 758 deputies.
In his work report, Liu, also president of the Beijing Organizing Committee for the 2008 Olympics (BOCOG), said the 2008 Beijing Summer Olympic Games was top priority on the work agenda for this year and next.
"The Olympics are a long-cherished dream of the Chinese nation, and we are determined to make the national capital a prosperous place and a harmonious society with civilized residents, and a healthy, user-friendly environment," said Liu.
Liu also promised that the government would step up audits to curb corruption and ensure the Olympics were clean and frugal.
According to Liu, Beijing's gross domestic product (GDP) grew at an average rate of 12.1 percent over the past five years. Its GDP totaled 772 billion yuan last year, and GDP per capita was 6,210 US dollars, meeting the goal set by the 9th municipal congress of the CPC two years ahead of time.
Local financial revenue rose from 45 billion yuan in 2001 to 112 billion yuan last year.
In the next five years, the government will strive to score an average GDP growth rate of nine percent, raising the per capita GDP of Beijing residents from 6,000 US dollars to 10,000 US dollars, said the Party official.
To this end, Beijing will endeavor to improve industrial structures and ensure that services account for 72 percent of the local economy.
"In addition to improved innovation, and balanced economic development among different districts, Beijing should redouble efforts to save energy, limit energy consumption and reduce exhaust emissions," said Liu, who added the city would strive to meet the national target for environmental control by 2010.
Beijing has said it will close coal mines, move power plants and chemical factories and other heavy polluters out of the city and continue to dismantle the city's Shougang steelworks, in a bid to meet environmental control targets.
The city is also trying to reduce the fumes from coal burned for heating, but exhaust emissions from cars in the city remain a very serious problem. There are about three million cars in the capital.
Liu emphasized the importance of fine traditional culture and Beijing's historical sites, as well as the necessity of modernizing education.
The government has taken steps to stamp out spitting, littering and queue-jumping in an attempt to present the image of a modern, civilized city to the world in August next year.
To turn Beijing into a harmonious place, it is imperative to establish public services and social security networks that will cover urban and rural areas.
"Attention must be paid to the distribution of income and to increasing wealth for rural and urban households," said Liu. "To make the national capital peaceful and orderly, people must have a means of voicing their opinions, and the mechanism for solving social problems at the grassroots level will be improved."
To make Beijing an environmentally healthy place, the government will step up efforts to improve ecological and environmental construction, while tightening environmental control.
"More trees and grass will be planted," said the Party secretary, adding that the government will vigorously develop a mass transit system.
The campaign to build a harmonious socialist society should be advanced on all fronts, he said.
"Safeguarding stability should always be our topmost political task and party committees must work to this end," said the Party boss.
In the next few days, deputies are expected to elect new senior officials for five-year terms on both the CPC Beijing Municipal Committee and the Municipal Committee for CPC Discipline Inspection, including the new Party secretary, as well as delegates to the 17th CPC National Congress later this year.
The 10th municipal Party congress, which is comprised of 743 elected and 15 invited deputies, will close on May 22.
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