China’s top legislature concludes annual session

By Eric Biegon in Beijing, China

The fifth session of China’s top legislature and top political advisory body concluded annual meetings after members of the National People’s Congress unanimously adopted President Xi Jinping’s government work report.

The adopted report will guide China’s political, social and economic enterprise for the year 2017.

Shortly after the closing ceremony Wednesday at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, Chinese Prime Minister Li Keqiang met the press to address weighty facets of the report.

Mr. Li asserted that China will remain a “key force in the world’s struggling economy” despite unimpressive economic performance last year.

He sharply rebuffed uncertainties that Beijing’s economic contribution to the world might come down based on the 6.5 percent performance by its economy against a projected 6.7 percent.

In his opinion the country’s Gross Domestic Product – GDP, which has hit 11 trillion US Dollars, is proof enough of the country’s resilience to economic shocks.

“I should say that the growth target of around 6.5-percent is not a low speed and it is not easy to meet,” he said.

A seemingly ecstatic Premier of the state council underscored China’s fidelity to free trade saying the system is beneficial to every nation within the setup, many of whom are developing countries in Africa.

“China champions globalization and free trade. All parties have found benefit from this trade structure,” Li affirmed.

He warned that protectionist measures championed by a number of nations, US included, will hurt even the strongest of economies in the long run.

Africa is China’s largest trading partner and Prime Minister Li’s commitment will only serve to solidify Sino-Africa relations as the continent seeks incentives from the global economic powerhouse to spur key sectors.

So far, Beijing has announced that half of the 60 billion US dollars pledged to Africa in 2015 and spread over 3 years have been disbursed while the other half has already been arranged.

A significant fraction of these volumes of cash have been used to develop road and rail infrastructures as China seeks to connect African Markets to guarantee ease of trade.

Further to this undertaking, China is in the process of injecting more impetus to Africa’s manufacturing sector through construction of mega industrial parks beginning this year.