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National lawmakers briefed on Chinese economic progress

(Xinhua)

08:22, August 30, 2012

BEIJING, Aug. 29 (Xinhua) -- China's economic and social development has maintained favorable momentum despite a tough international environment and complicated domestic situation, a senior economic official said here on Wednesday.

The economic growth and consumer price increase remained within set boundaries, said Zhang Ping, minister in charge of the National Development and Reform Commission, when briefing national lawmakers at a bimonthly session of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress(NPC).

The meeting was presided over by Wu Bangguo, chairman of the NPC Standing Committee.

Economic restructuring and efforts to improve energy efficiency and reduce pollution have reported progress while reforms in key economic sectors have gone deep and people's livelihoods have improved, Zhang said.

Despite the progress, he also warned of risks and challenges ahead.

"We should not underestimate the harsh situation in international market and complexity at home," he said.

The impacts of the global financial crisis continue running deep and the world economy is under an increasing pressure of slowdown with more and more complications undermining the stability and certainty, he said.

In addition, long-term problems in the Chinese economy are mixed with immediate risks such as economic growth slowdown and unfavorable business environment, the minister said.

In the next few months, the country will work to stimulate domestic demand, maintain farming output, speed up restructuring and stabilize consumer prices, he told the lawmakers.

At Wednesday's session, Finance Minister Xie Xuren also reported on the implementation of government budgets.

Over the first seven months of 2012, the country's public revenue totaled 7.45 trillion yuan (1.18 trillion U.S. dollars), a year-on-year rise of 11.6 percent, while government expenditure reached 6.34 trillion yuan (1 trillion dollars), up 23.4 percent, according to Xie's report.

The Chinese government will maintain a proactive fiscal policy so as to realize a stable economic growth and push forward restructuring through fiscal and monetary policy leverage, Xie vowed.

More investment will go to public services to benefit people's livelihoods and efforts will be made to reform the fiscal and taxation system as well as improve the efficiency of government expenses, he said.

Another report on the financial situation of county-level governments was also submitted for lawmakers' review.

According to Xie, the financial situation of county governments has greatly improved and their budget for local public services has notably increased.

However, more efforts will be needed to further balance the financial situation of county governments and improve the management of expenditure, he said.

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