Date
20 November 2017
Chinese leader Xi Jinping. Photo: Reuters
Chinese leader Xi Jinping. Photo: Reuters

The Big Picture: POLITBURO MEETING

China will continue to focus on economic reform and accomplish goals in certain important areas this year, the politburo of the Communist Party of China’s (CPC) Central Committee said after a meeting chaired by the party’s general secretary Xi Jinping {習近平} on Monday.

The nation will open its markets to foreign investors and increase its competitiveness in the global markets, the politburo said. It will also boost domestic consumption, push forward agricultural modernizaton, carry out reforms in the rural areas, and expand urbanization.

The government will maintain a proactive fiscal policy and prudent monetary stance to maintain a reasonable growth rate and achieve industrial upgrade, the politburo said. Despite the complicated domestic and external economic situation, China’s economy is still within a special period that has a lot of strategic opportunities.

This year, the central government is expected to further open up more monopolies, including the telecommunications, oil and gas, railway and banking industries, amid an improving external environment, observers said.

After China Petroleum & Chemical Corp.’s (Sinopec) (00386.HK) recent move to restructure its retail oil business, the State-owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission (SASAC) is likely to order more state-owned enterprises to sell stakes in their downstream segments to private investors, who can help improve their efficiency and operations, observers said. Such moves will stimulate fund-raising activities in the capital markets.

The politburo said it had talked about other matters during the meeting but did not elaborate. The investigation of Zhou Yongkang {周永康}, a former standing member of the politburo, could have been discussed, observers said. 

Feb trade data ‘may show big holiday effect’, paper says

The Lunar New Year holiday could result in unusual fluctuations in China’s February foreign trade data, the China Securities Journal reported Tuesday, citing commerce ministry spokesman Shen Danyang. Shen said trade and investment data can vary significantly in any one month, especially in the volatile trade months of January and February. He said the Sino-Japan trade figures for January should not be over-interpreted. Trade between the two countries grew 7.8 percent during the month after falling 5.1 percent a year earlier, the report said.

Top court upholds damages ruling against Qihoo, paper says

The Supreme People’s Court has upheld a lower court ruling ordering anti-virus company Qihoo 360 Technology Co. to pay 5 million yuan (US$820,000) in damages to rival Tencent over unfair competition, Shanghai Daily reported Tuesday. Qihoo had appealed against a Guangdong Province Higher People’s Court ruling last year in a case in which Tencent, China’s biggest internet company, initially asked for 125 million yuan in compensation. Tencent said it suffered economic losses after Qihoo blocked users from installing Tencent’s related services, preventing them from viewing and subscribing to Tencent’s value-added services, the report said.

– Contact HKEJ at [email protected]

JP/CG

 

 

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