China hails successes in social, economic development at People's Congress
China 's leaders have hailed success in the implementation of the country's national economic and social development plans in 2016 at the opening meeting of the fifth session of the 12th National People's Congress (NPC) in Beijing on Sunday.
Over 3,000 delegates to the fifth session of the 12th National People's Congress (NPC) gather at the opening ceremony of the annual session of China's top legislature in Beijing.
The opening ceremony of China's top legislature was attended by the General Secretary of the Communist Party of China, Chinese President Xi Jinping, accompanied by Party and state leaders.
Delivering a report, the China's Premier Li Keqiang declared results from 2016 as a very good to start to progress on implementing the country's 13th Five-Year Plan (2016-2020).
China set a target for 2017 of growth in gross national product at around 6.5 percent.
Premier Li said that last year China's GDP reached 74.4 trillion yuan representing about 6.7 percent growth and contributing more than 30 percent to total global growth.
Energy consumption per unit of GDP fell by five percent meaning both the quality and efficiency of economic performance had improved markedly over the past year, he said.
The achievement of such targets would help steer and steady expectations and help make structural adjustments as well as achieve the goal of building a moderately prosperous society in all respects by 2020, Li said while delivering the report at the session.
The session is the first since Xi Jinping was endorsed as the core of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee last October.
Li called for uniting more closely around the CPC Central Committee with President Xi as the core and working hard to fulfill development targets.
The year 2017 is seen as being of crucial importance for China as the CPC will convene its 19th National Congress in the second half of the year to elect a leadership for the next five years during which Xi's vision of a well-off society is to be achieved.
In terms of poverty reduction, China's government spent the budget of over 100 billion yuan for alleviating poverty across the country, and helped bring 12.4 million people in remote areas out of poverty.
The government of China continually provided a budget of more than four percent of GDP for education and canceled fees for upper secondary school students who live in poor families in remote areas.
Moreover, more than 84 million people in China last year received scholarships for studies at school, university or institute for higher education.
Last year, China created 13. 14 million urban jobs, taking the urban unemployment rate down to 4.02 percent, the lowest point for several years.
Meanwhile, more than 120 million Chinese people travelled abroad.
(Latest Update March 20, 2017)