People need quality growth
President Xi Jinping recently emphasized that the fundamental purpose of boosting economic growth is to ease people’s concerns. The leadership has always followed the people-first principle. China has solved many knotty problems in the course of its reform. Yet in most cases, the mounting pressure created by the problems necessitated the reforms.
China’s rise is based on solving problems one after another to bring tangible benefits to the people. But solving the existent problems does not mean new ones will not arise.
The small demand for consumer goods during the planned economy period gave way to ever-rising demands after reform and opening-up were launched, which played a key role in China’s high-speed growth for more than 30 years. But the fast-paced growth has led to structural overcapacity.
In the new normal, the Chinese economy has seen profound changes in consumers’ demand; the demand for more personalized products and higher-quality services is rising. A product’s quality and brand matters more to some consumers than its price. In fact, last year Chinese people spent 1.2 trillion yuan ($180 billion) overseas on luxury goods.
This is where supply-side structural reform comes in. The authorities launched it to better meet consumers’ demand. So companies should realize that if they adjust their products to the market’s needs, they can avoid overcapacity.
Among people’s concerns today are environmentally friendly heating, garbage classification, air and water pollution, proper waste disposal, nursing homes for the aged, housing problems and food safety. These concerns can be met by changing the energy generation and consumption pattern, protecting the environment, disposing of waste scientifically, improving the social welfare system, regulating the housing market and strictly supervising food safety. All these sectors not only offer great opportunities, they can also be new growth points.