THE 13TH FIVE-YEAR PLAN PERIOD: A DECISIVE STAGE
NEW BBC DOCUMENTARY TELLS CHINA’S HISTORY
WHAT is China’s blueprint for achieving the goal of building a moderately prosperous society in all respects by 2020, and how to implement it? During the Fourth Session of the 12th National People’s Congress last March, Premier Li Keqiang offered a thorough explanation when delivering the 2015 report on government work.
Taking into consideration various scenarios over the next five years, both at home and abroad, the 13th FiveYear Plan advances the main objectives and indicators for China’s economic and social development in the years leading up to 2020. The comprehensive blueprint was formulated in light of the needs of human beings, aiming to promote the people’s rounded development, and their comprehensive development.
The blueprint’s main goals include four categories, namely: economic development (four goals, 16 percent of total), innovation (four, 16 percent), people’s well-being (seven, 28 percent), and resources and environment (10, 33 percent).
These goals also demonstrate the resolution of all levels of governments to allocate public resources (including public finance, public investment, public facilities, and public policy measures) in a rational way, to provide public services, and actively cultivate a market presenting a congenial environment for investment and business under the rule of law, and thereby to reduce extrinsic risks and costs.
The First Time: a Target Zone
The average annual economic growth in the time frame of the new five-year plan is set at above 6.5 percent. It is a core goal of the plan, as well as acting as a weather vane for the country’s economic development. The new blueprint for the first time changes the customary fixed growth rate goal to a target zone. It indicates the government’s scientific and rational thinking, and also allows leeway for fluctuations.
China’s economy has surpassed US $ 10 trillion in scale, and its integration into the world economy is now extensive and deeply-rooted. These factors inject even more complexities and uncertainties into the country, both at home and from abroad. Adopting a target zone itself is an innovation in the means of macroeconomic control. The “above 6.5 percent” target will ensure the doubling of GDP and income per capita of urban and rural residents in 2020 as against the 2010 level. This clear “bottomline” signals an accurate message to the market and international society, as well as the resolve to “race to the top” and attain seven percent growth.
To accelerate optimizing and upgrading of the industrial structure is a key feature of the “new normal” phase China’s economy is currently undergoing. As regards the three major industries, the 13th Five-Year Plan aims to expand the share of the service industry in GDP and employment in this sector by some six percentage points compared with the 2015 level, or up to 56 percent and 46.6 percent respectively. At the same time, agricultural employment is estimated to decline to around 23 percent. Agricultural modernization will be greatly boosted, however, in order to construct a modern agricultural management system. The status of modern manufacturing and strategic emerging industries will likewise rise. According to the plan, the future will see rapid development of new economies, new types of business and frontier areas, as well as expansion of the cyber-economy. The plan also pledges to facilitate green industries, and open up the maritime economy.
The main task of the new plan is to improve labor productivity per capita from RMB 87,000 to RMB 120,000, and register an average annual growth of over 6.6 percent. The five-year plan includes this element for the first time, in response to the continuous decline of the working age population that will render labor productivity of key competitiveness in the future.
Pivotal Function of Sci-Tech Innovation
The blueprint sets as a goal that scientific and techno-
To accelerate optimizing and upgrading of the industrial structure is a key feature of the “new normal” phase China’s economy is currently undergoing.