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SCIO briefing on China's economic performance in first half of 2020

The State Council Information Office held a press conference on July 16 in Beijing to brief the media on China's economic performance in the first half of 2020.

China.org.cnUpdated: July 17, 2020


I have two questions. First, please introduce the consumption situation in first-tier cities. Second, what impact will the pandemic have on economic growth in the third and fourth quarters?

Liu Aihua:

Thanks for your questions. Let me answer the second question first, which is about the trend of economic growth in the third and fourth quarters. 

The recovery of economic indicators in the first half of the year, especially in the second quarter, shows that the economy's sustained recovery in the second half of the year has foundations. 

First, the stable economic recovery in the first half of the year has laid a solid foundation for a sustained recovery in the second half of the year. Since March, many indicators have seen significant gains or narrower declines, which indicates that the impact of the pandemic is generally controllable, and the Chinese economy has a strong capacity for self-adjustment. Our country has a perfect industrial system, increasingly sophisticated infrastructure and the advantages of a super large market, which will continue to help respond effectively to the impact of the pandemic in the next stage.

Second, during the pandemic, many new industries, business forms and business models have been created, which will continue to provide strong support for the economic recovery. During the first half of the year, we noticed that new business models, such as working from home, online education, intelligent construction, and driverless delivery, have efficiently resolved some problems in our lives. New technologies, such as cloud computing, big data and artificial intelligence, are developing rapidly. New industries, such as the digital economy, smart manufacturing and life and health, have become new growth poles, which will provide more support for economic growth in the next phase. 

Third, the effect of macro policies will further pay off. During the first half of this year, to deal with the pandemic's impact, our country has provided fiscal and taxation support, financial support and comprehensively strengthened the policy of giving top priority to employment. All these policies have paid off so far, which provided experience for better responding to the outbreak's impact in the second half of the year and further strengthened our confidence. Meanwhile, the epidemic has exposed some problems, which prompted us to further address problems and reinforce weak links. We will step up innovation to strengthen the basis for sustained growth and vitality of the economy. 

Given these favorable conditions, we are confident of a sustained economic recovery in the second half of the year. Meanwhile, economic recovery has its foundations, potential and conditions to be realized. However, it must also be emphasized that the rapid spread of the pandemic in other countries has made it difficult for the world economy and trade to recover. The recovery of domestic demand is constrained to some extent, and there is still considerable pressure to keep businesses and employment stable. So we must think about worst-case scenarios, fully understand the breadth, complexity and persistence of the impact of the outbreak, focus on ensuring the six priorities of employment, people's livelihoods, development of market entities, food and energy security, stable operation of industrial and supply chains, and smooth functioning at the community level, and ensuring stability in the six areas of employment, finance, foreign trade, foreign investment, domestic investment, and market expectations. We should pay close attention to the implementation of policies and work hard to fulfill the goals of economic and social development set for the year. 

Your first question is about consumption in first-tier cities. We need to make a new statistical grouping based on your question and redefine the first-tier cities. You can contact the information office of the NBS after the press conference, and we will reorganize the statistics. Thank you. 

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