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People's Daily Online

CPPCC advances 'social, economic' progress

People's Daily Online

By WANG YANFEI,XIN ZHIMING (China Daily) 08:13, March 14, 2017

Session concludes, having produced many proposals on issues like alleviating poverty and reducing smog

China's top political advisory body concluded its annual session on Monday, with more than 2,000 members participating in the 11-day session having provided 5,210 proposals for policymakers.

Members have done a good job carrying out their responsibilities, making valuable suggestions to "promote China's social and economic development", according to Yu Zhengsheng, chairman of the advisory body, the National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference.

Yu spoke at the closure of the 12th National Committee of the CPPCC at the Great Hall of the People.

Proposals made by the members covered a wide range of topics, including economics, politics, culture, social development, and ecological and environmental protection.

Economic issues were the focus of 34.7 percent, down from 42 percent in 2016.

Proposals on politics, culture, social development and the environment rose by different proportions compared with a year ago.

Last year, CPPCC National Committee members submitted 5,375 proposals. Although the number fell this year, "the quality of proposals has risen significantly", according to a CPPCC document.

Proposals addressed such important issues as energy consumption, poverty reduction and the production of safe, quality goods, according to the document.

"It does not mean that we do not care about the economy," said Zhang Lianqi, a member of the National Committee of the CPPCC. "But our proposals have become more diversified and more of our focus has been put on areas that can raise people's 'sense of gain', such as poverty alleviation and air pollution, which are closely related to people's lives." Zhang is a senior consultant with the Center for China and Globalization, a Beijing-based think tank.

It is natural for China to pay more attention to such topics as environmental protection and social development after becoming the world's second-largest economy, analysts said.

"China has obviously intensified efforts to promote environmental protection since 2016, which is a positive response to the appeals of the people after they have seen improvement in their living standards," said Xie Chao, macroeconomic analyst at Everbright Securities.

Poverty reduction was an important focal point of the CPPCC session this year. China brought 12.4 million people in rural areas out of poverty in 2016, although there were still 43.35 million people living below the poverty line at the end of 2016, officials said.

"The poverty alleviation efforts showed that China's development is people-centered, which is the essence of economic growth," Li Zhongjie, a member of CPPCC National Committee, told Xinhua.

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