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Readers welcome outspoken former premier's new book

(Xinhua)

13:47, September 09, 2011

BEIJING, Sept. 8 (Xinhua) -- Readers flocked to bookstores on Thursday to buy the second book published by Zhu Rongji, China's outspoken former premier and top economic planner in the late 1990s, eight years since his retirement.

The four-volume book, "Record of Zhu Rongji's Talks," includes over 300 articles of Zhu's speeches, talks, letters and written instructions from 1991 to 2003, when he served two four-year terms as vice-premier and another term as premier, the book's publisher People's Press wrote in the book's preface.

The articles, many of which had never been made public, show the top decision-making process in crucial economic reforms, from housing to social welfare, and investment policies to financial markets. The articles also shed light on how Zhu led the country in the battle against inflation and the 1997-1998 Asian financial crisis, it added.

The release of the book has spawned thousands of web comments from readers, with many saying they would "definitely buy one."

In Beijing Books Building, the largest bookstore in China's capital, "Record of Zhu Rongji's Talks" was displayed in the store's the most prominent spot under the "recommended book" banner.

Chen Jun'an, a chemical engineering student at Hebei Polytechnic University, said he came to buy the book because he liked Zhu's first book and the way the former premier spoke.

"I feel he is quite honest and down to earth, without the airs of officialdom," Chen said.

Reader Li Zhenghao, a journalist with China Business Media, said he was keen on learning about the central government's decisions to establish the Shanghai Stock Exchange from Zhu's book.

Zhu, 83, is known for being upright, outspoken, and firm in the fight against corruption. Zhu is also noted for initiating bold economic reforms pushing the country's transition to a market economy.

Zhu's first book, a compilation of transcripts from his press conferences, met immense market success when it was published in 2009. Sales hit 700,000 copies in its first week of release and the book was crowned "best book of the year" in various book billboards that year.

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