China "must not slacken efforts" to promote export amid a sharp decline in external demand and growing international trade protectionism, Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao said Thursday, pledging reinforced government support.
He made the remarks in a government work report delivered to lawmakers at the opening of the annual session of the National People's Congress.
"We will continue to diversify our export markets and compete on quality, enhance traditional export markets, and energetically open up new markets," said Wen.
The government is to take a series of measures to relieve the difficulties of exporters and to ensure steady growth in foreign trade, according to Wen.
A central government fund for trade development will be increased, eyeing to cultivate brand-name export products and support small and medium-sized enterprises in expanding their international markets, Wen said.
To improve the country's financial services for importing and exporting, the government will expand the coverage of export credit insurance, and encourage financial institutions to develop export credit, he said.
The government will adjust the prohibited or restricted commodity categories of processing trade, and encourage the relocation of export processing industries from the eastern to the central and western regions, Wen said.
Other measures to support foreign trade are as follows according to the report:
-- to actively improve policies and measures to encourage development of trade in services and develop the outsourcing of international services to China;
-- to expand imports, focusing on introducing advanced technology and equipment and increasing imports of key spare parts and components, and important energy sources, resources and raw materials;
-- to improve supervision and service in customs, quality inspections and foreign exchange and intensify the development of border ports;
-- to vigorously promote the Doha round of trade talks, accelerate implementation of the strategy of free trade zones, and properly handle trade frictions.