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China Lays Framework for Q4 National Economic Development

China will adopt a flexible and prudent macro-control policy to keep a stable and rapid economic development in the current fourth quarter, according to the State Council in Beijing on Sunday.

Related financial, credit and foreign trade measures will be carried out in the near future in response to the slowing trend of the country's economic growth and the continuous fluctuation in the domestic capital market amid the ongoing global financial crisis, according to a State Council meeting presided over by Premier Wen Jiabao on Sunday.

Agriculture continued to be a priority, with multiple support policies to come following the Communist Party of China Central Committee's decision to strengthen rural development this week.

To boost development of small- and medium-sized enterprises, the government planned to widen their investment channels by further encouraging financial institutions to give out more loans. Companies would also get more fiscal support for technology innovation.

In addition, the country would reinforce national investment in areas such as the southwest quake-zone reconstruction, infrastructure development and social welfare system, among others.

With regard to the foreign trade sector, the State Council, China's Cabinet, decided to increase imports of goods of domestic need and support the country's exports so as to realize the balance of international payments.

"We will further raise the export rebate of labour-intensive products such as garments and textiles, as well as mechanical and electrical products with high-added value," the council said.

In addition, the country's top administrative body would still keep a cautious eye on price increases with a focus on agricultural and energy related goods.

The advent of September's tainted milk scandal had also prompted the central government to pay closer attention to food safety in the fourth quarter. Regulations on dairy product quality and safety, which took effect earlier this month, would be further reinforced, according to the council decision.

While acknowledging the affect of the worldwide economic slowdown on the domestic economy, the Cabinet still expressed confidence for the nation to continue a healthy development.

"Our economy remains vigorous and has the capability to defend itself against international risks," Premier Wen Jiabao said at a State Council meeting on Friday.

(Xinhua News Agency October 20, 2008)

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