Chinese Vice Premier Wu Yi said Thursday in Zhuhai that China will continue to push forward the opening of the service sector and open new areas to absorb overseas capital.
Wu made the keynote speech at the opening ceremony of the two-day World Economic Development Declaration Conference (WEDDC) and the China Business Summit.
Wu said that China will continue to adopt an active fiscal policy and a stable monetary policy, expand domestic demand and promote consumption so as to ensure the sustainable, rapid and healthy growth of the Chinese economy.
Currently, housing and automobiles have gradually become hot new consumption areas in China, she said. Thanks to China's upgraded consumption demand and the improved investment environment, China maintained its comprehensive advantages in attracting overseas capital, retaining its position as a hot spot for overseas investors, in particular the multinational corporations.
According to Wu, the Chinese government will continue to improve the legal system for overseas investment in line with the rules as required by the World Trade Organization, simplify the investment approval procedures and enhance intellectual property rights protection, creating an open, fair and transparent business environment for investors.
Wu pledged to continue to push forward the opening of China's service sector. China has already allowed the setup of wholly foreign-owned procurement centers in Shenzhen, Shanghai and Tianjin on a trial basis. She said it was to try to cater to the development of the logistics industry and give play to China's advantages in the processing industry.
In line with the adjustment of the international industrial mix, Wu said, China will continue to encourage overseas-funded enterprises to invest in the manufacturing and service industries while paying attention to outsourcing within multinational corporations.
China has already formulated policies and legal regulations to allow overseas investors to pour investment by means of acquisition and build-operate-transfer, allow overseas enterprises to go public, encourage multinational corporations to participate in innovation of state-owned enterprises, further expand overseas investment's handling of domestic non-performing assets, allow overseas investment to accept or transfer shares of legal persons by means of direct investment and encourage multinational corporations to set up regional headquarters and research and development centers, she said.
China to encourage foreign investors to join in regional economic development
Wu Yi said that China will amend regulations to encourage foreign-funded companies to invest in the central and western areas.
As part of an ambitious plan to develop the western part of the country, China has decided to invest more in the infrastructure construction and support the setting up of economic and technological development zones in the region.
Besides western areas, other regional economic development will also provide great opportunities to foreign investors, noted Wu. The Yangtze River Delta and Pearl River Delta are expected to take a lead in the national economy and to extend their success to other comparatively less-developed regions, she said.
The reviving of the old industrial base in the northeastern part of China, especially the restructuring of the state-owned enterprises, will also provide new space for foreign investors, she said.
While sparing no efforts to woo foreign investors, China will try to cultivate its own multinationals and create a favorable environment for domestic companies to explore the overseas market, said Wu.
Vice Premier on equality, credibility, cooperation and development
The vice premier called for all countries to adopt the principle of "equality, credibility, cooperation and development" in developing the global economy.
Wu noted that mutual benefits and cooperation are the two major characteristics of the world economic globalization. The flow of capital, goods and personnel has linked the world together.
To ensure sustainable and stable growth of the world economy, the economic gap between the developed countries and the developing countries should be shortened, said Wu.
On the subject of equality, Wu called to set up a fair and reasonable international economic order to provide equal opportunities for both developed and developing countries.
Credibility should be taken as the base of the world economy in the 21st century, said Wu, adding that with credibility, the civilization of human beings can be obtained and economic and social activities can be ensured.
Wu also called for all countries to cooperate and seek a sustainable economic development which is environmentally-friendly.
Wu admitted that the world economy is now facing a series of problems, including the long-standing problems in the international economic system, imbalance of economic development and an ever-increasing gap between the rich and the poor countries.
Wu noted that though positive signs could be witnessed in current economic development, the revival momentum is still lagging. How to solve the problems that occur in the development of a multilateral trade system and the comeback of trade protectionism have become the common challenges facing the international community.
Vice premier hopes multinational companies contribute more to global economy
"We hope multinational companies can realize social responsibility and contribute more to the stable and sustainable development of the global economy," Wu said. As an important drive for economic globalization, multinational companies have gained wide attention from the world.
Their development has promoted the optimization of resources in the world, sped up the structural adjustment of international industry, promoted technological progress and system innovation and provided more opportunities to deepen trade and economic exchanges and cooperation.
Multinational investment played an important role in economic development and trade growth for all nations, especially creating conditions for developing nations to gain an advantage on the global stage, she said.
Wu added that grasping rich economic resources, information, advanced technological and management methods, enterprises and private sectors have become the powerhouse of international economic activities and played an important role in the world.
"We advocate that government, enterprises, and private sectors should cooperate and coordinate with each other," Wu said. "Government should provide fair and transparent policy support and create beneficial conditions for production and management, while enterprises and private sectors should play a more important role in capital support, technological advancement and management improvement."
China's well-off society to play positive role in world economic development
China's plan to build a well-off society by 2020, and the goal's realization, will not only benefit Chinese people, but also spur the economic growth of the neighboring countries and play a positive role in world economic development, according to the Chinese Vice Premier.
Wu said that over the past two decades of reform and opening up, China has witnessed great achievements in its economic development. The World Bank statistics show that China's GDP has ranked sixth in the world.
China has accomplished its first two development goals during the past 20 years in the realization of the modernization drive, said Wu, noting that the country has begun working on its third development goal, aiming to completely build itself into a well-off society by 2020.
Under such a goal, China's GDP in 2020 will quadruple that of 2000, to reach four trillion US dollars. China's total trade volume at that time will be also quadrupled to hit two billion US dollars, said Wu.
Wu said the outbreak of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) in parts of China during the first half of this year threatened Chinese people's health and security. But the Chinese government took a series of measures to have brought the epidemic under effective control and achieved temporary success in the fight against SARS.
Despite of the negative impact of SARS, China's national economy still maintained a good development trend, said Wu.
Statistics show that during the first three quarters of this year, China's GDP increased 8.5 percent year-on-year, financial income rose 22.5 percent, and the total trade volume surged 36.2 percent.
The goal of seven percent growth in China's GDP this year can be completely accomplished, said Wu.