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Focus should be on new growth model

Updated: 2013-01-26 22:17
By Li Xiang in Davos, Switzerland (

The discussion over China's policy agenda under the new leadership is heating up, with leading government officials and international economists saying at the World Economic Forum that China should continue to push forward structural reforms in order to achieve sustainable development.

Zhang Xiaoqiang, vice-chairman of the National Development and Reform Commission of China, said that the focus of the new leadership's agenda will be shifting the country's growth model toward efficiency and quality.

"The new leadership has emphasized clearly that China's development will move toward efficiency and quality through structural reforms," he said at a panel discussion of the World Economic Forum, which concluded on Saturday.

"China will rely more and more on enlarging domestic demand and science and technological innovation, which is the only way to ensure sustainable development," he said.

But the domestic-oriented policy agenda does not mean that China will close its market, he said, noting that China will continue to open more its market to the world and to international enterprises.

Gordon Brown, former British prime minister, said that the policy agenda of China's new leadership should recognize the convergence of interests of its international partners.

"While reforms are needed to improve education, urban system, labor market and the environmental condition, recognition of interdependence is very important, which requires far more international cooperation than ever before," he said.

Lawrence Summers, a professor at Harvard University, said that growth and modernization will still be a major priority for China, despite the fact that China will soon overtake the US as the world's largest economy.

"It is important to distinguish being the world's largest economy and the world's most cutting-edge economy," he said, noting that China is still well short of being a cutting-edge economy in terms of the standard of living as its income per capita is only 25 percent of that of the US.

Kevin Rudd, former Australian prime minister, said that China's continuing growth requires a strategic period of peace and it should avoid letting nationalism dominate its policy agenda when dealing with regional frictions with its neighboring countries.

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