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No turning back from reforms, says President Xi in NewYear message
December 31, 2014, 12:26 pm

Chinese President Xi Jinping delivers his New Year speech via state broadcasters, in Beijing, capital of China, Dec. 31, 2014 [Xinhua]

Chinese President Xi Jinping delivers his New Year speech via state broadcasters, in Beijing, capital of China, Dec. 31, 2014 [Xinhua]

In a New Year Message broadcast through state media on Wednesday, Chinese President Xi Jinping said China will advance reforms and ‘rule of law’ in 2015.

China needs to balance ‘reforms’ and ‘rule of law’ as “a bird’s two wings”, said Xi. The Chinese President, this October, took the additional title as chief of the world’s second largest economy, valued at $17.6 trillion.

China HSBC PMI for December indicated on Wednesday that manufacturing contracted for the first time in seven months.

China on Wednesday published detailed plans to reform its fiscal reporting system.

The Chinese President told domestic and overseas audiences on Wednesday that the past year was “unforgettable”.

“In 2014, we pressed ahead with reform, cracked many hard nuts and introduced a slew of important reform measures, which were closely related to the interests of our citizens. We adapted to the new normal of economic growth,” said Xi.

Xi has launched an unprecedented campaign targeting Party, government, military and state-owned company officials suspected of corruption after he came to power in late 2012. Official figures say some 25,000 officials were investigated on suspicion of corruption in just the first half of 2014.

Zhou Yongkang, former security czar and retired member of China’s most elite political body, the Politburo Standing Committee, was arrested on a raft of corruption charges, including the leaking of official secrets and bribery.

General Xu Caihou who was once a member of China’s elite decision-making body, the Politburo, is one of the highest level military officer to be investigated since 1949.

Meanwhile, the Chinese President, reserved his special cheers for the Chinese medical personnel working in African countries to combat the spread of the deadly Ebola virus.

“Unfazed by hardships and risks, our medical personnel rushed to the front line of the Ebola epidemic in west Africa to save patients. Together with local people, they achieved obvious progress in testing viruses, observing and treating patients and giving training on epidemic prevention,” Xi said in a message to the aid workers.

China has sent hundreds of medical workers to affected African countries following the Ebola outbreak.

Chinese shares closed higher on the last trading day of 2014, with the key Shanghai Composite Index rising to a nearly 5-year high on Wednesday.

The Shanghai index soared 2.18 percent to close at 3,234.68 points, the highest level since Jan. 20 2010 when it ended at 3,151.85 points. For the entire 2014, the index jumped 52.87 percent, or 1,118.7 points, which was the biggest annual gain since 2010.

In 2015, China will continue to comprehensively deepen reform, from which “there is no turning back”, the Chinese President said on Wednesday.

“Of course, without the support of the people, we could not have achieved anything. I must give our great people a thumbs-up,” said Xi.


 TBP and Agencies

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