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6. Making solid progress in the coordinated regional development strategy
Regional development policies will be refined, progress will be made in equalizing access to basic public services, the gap in urban-rural and regional development will gradually be narrowed, and the comparative advantages and potential of each region will be fully leveraged.
We will create a new landscape in regional development. We will step up support for reform and development in old revolutionary base areas, areas with large ethnic minority populations, border areas, and poor areas. We will promote coordinated development of the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region, with the focus on relieving Beijing of functions nonessential to its role as the nation’s capital, and develop the Xiongan New Area in line with forward-looking plans and high standards. We will move forward with developing the Yangtze Economic Belt, giving primary consideration to protecting ecosystems and pursuing green development. We will unveil and implement the development plan for the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area, and promote in all areas mutually beneficial cooperation between the mainland, Hong Kong, and Macao. We will draw up new guidelines for large-scale development in the western region, implement policies for revitalizing northeast China and other old industrial bases, continue to promote the rise of the central region, and support the eastern region in spearheading development. We will promote economic transformation in resource-depleted areas. We will strengthen the maritime economy, and resolutely safeguard China’s maritime rights and interests.
We will pursue better-quality new urbanization. This year, another 13 million people will be registered as permanent urban residents, and we will speed up work on granting permanent urban residency to people from rural areas living in cities. We will prioritize the development of public transportation, and improve local amenities like food markets and parking facilities. We will take planned steps to rebuild villages in cities and old residential areas, improve supporting utilities, and encourage the installation of elevators in old residential buildings where conditions permit. We will do more to improve drainage pipeline networks and underground utility tunnels. Satisfying the needs of the people is what new urbanization is all about. We need to provide services that are attentive to detail and exercise management that puts people first. Our goal is to see that every person has equal opportunity for development and to make everyday life more convenient and comfortable.
7. Actively increasing consumption and promoting effective investment
We will boost consumption in response to the new changes in consumer demand, focus on making structural adjustments in increasing investment, and create a positive cycle of supply structure upgrading and appropriate expansion of aggregate demand.
We will strengthen the fundamental role of consumption in driving economic growth. We will promote consumption upgrading and develop new forms and models of consumption. We will extend preferential policies on purchase tax on new-energy vehicles by another three years, and rescind all local policies that restrict sales of non-local second-hand vehicles. We will support private actors in providing more services in healthcare, elderly care, education, culture, and sports. We will create integrated tourism demonstration zones, and lower ticket prices at key state tourist sites. We will promote the healthy development of online shopping and express delivery services. All types of behavior that infringe on consumers’ rights and interests will be punished in accordance with law without leniency.
We will enable investment to play the pivotal role in improving the supply structure. This year will see 732 billion yuan invested in railway construction and around 1.8 trillion yuan invested in highway and waterway projects; the scale of investment in ongoing water conservancy projects will reach 1 trillion yuan. The central and western regions will continue to be the priority for major infrastructure construction. We will carry out a new round of major technology transformation and upgrading projects. The central government budget will include 537.6 billion yuan of investment, an increase of 30 billion yuan over last year. We will implement policies and measures designed to encourage private investment, introduce a number of attractive projects in sectors like rail, civil aviation, oil and natural gas, and telecommunications, and make sure that private investment can gain entry and is able to develop.
8. Creating a new landscape in all-around opening-up
China will further expand the scope and raise the quality of its opening-up; the structure, layout, institutions, and mechanisms for opening-up will be improved, and we will use high-standard opening-up to generate high-quality development.
We will advance international cooperation under the Belt and Road Initiative. We are committed to achieving shared growth through discussion and collaboration, and will act on the outcomes of the Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation. We will work toward building major international corridors and deepen cooperation on streamlining customs clearance along the routes of the Belt and Road Initiative. We will expand industrial capacity cooperation with other countries, and with this enable Chinese manufacturing and Chinese services to go global. We will improve the composition of outbound investment. We will expand opening-up in the western region, inland areas, and border areas, creating new opportunities for China’s economic cooperation with other countries.
We will promote a steady growth in foreign investment. We will strengthen alignment with international business rules, and foster a world-class business environment. The general manufacturing sector will be completely opened up, and access to sectors like telecommunications, medical services, education, elderly care, and new-energy vehicles will be expanded. We will phase in an opening-up of bank card clearing and other markets; lift restrictions on the scope of operations of foreign-invested insurance agent companies, and ease or lift restrictions on the share of foreign-owned equity in companies in sectors including banking, securities, fund management, futures, and financial asset management. We will make market entry standards the same for both Chinese and foreign banks. Overseas investors will be granted tax deferral for the reinvestment of profit made in China. Procedures for setting up foreign-invested enterprises will be simplified, and business filing and business registration will be processed together in one go. We will spread the use of practices developed in free trade zones all over the country, and explore opening free trade ports, working toward new heights in reform and opening-up.
We will consolidate the healthy trend toward stable growth in foreign trade. We will expand the coverage of export credit insurance, and shave another third off the total time taken for customs clearance. We will reform the mechanism for developing trade in services. We will foster new forms and models of trade. We will encourage processing trade to shift to the central and western regions. We will actively expand imports, host the first China International Import Expo, and lower import tariffs on automobiles, some everyday consumer goods, and so on. We will open our market wider to promote industry upgrading and more balanced development of trade, and to provide Chinese consumers with a broader range of choices.
We will promote trade and investment liberalization and facilitation. China is committed to promoting economic globalization and protecting free trade. We are ready to work with all relevant parties to advance multilateral trade negotiations, and will work for the early conclusion of negotiations on the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership, and speed up efforts to build the Free Trade Area of the Asia-Pacific, and the East Asia Economic Community. China calls for trade disputes to be settled through discussion as equals, opposes trade protectionism, and will resolutely safeguard its lawful rights.