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Xi Jinping talks of 'extraordinary' year, ignoring trade war, slowdown

CHINESE President Xi Jinping put a positive spin on the nation's achievements throughout 2018 in a year-end speech that downplayed problems

Xi Jinping talks of 'extraordinary' year, ignoring trade war, slowdown

CHINESE President Xi Jinping put a positive spin on the nation's achievements throughout 2018 in a year-end speech that downplayed problems

04 January 2019 - 19:00

CHINESE President Xi Jinping put a positive spin on the nation's achievements throughout 2018 in a year-end speech that downplayed problems.

In the address to members of Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference, President Xi said 2018 had been 'extraordinary' for the party and government and flagged up a number of achievements, Xinhua reported.



While the Belt and Road Initiative has faced an increasing international pushback amid fears it is saddling poorer countries with unsustainable debts, Mr Xi's speech steered clear of this and other sensitive topics, reported The South China Post from Hong Kong.



The Chinese leader highlighted a number of international forums and events the country had organised and pointed to the Greater Bay Area plan, a project to integrate Hong Kong and Macau more closely with neighbouring parts of the mainland, as proof of how the 'one country, two systems' policy was developing.



Mr Xi only made terse references to the country's economy development, which is facing its biggest challenges in a decade as growth slows and concerns grow that the country will not be able to achieve its growth target of 6.5 per cent for this year.



Mr Xi did not highlight any particular economic achievements over the past year and said only that next year the party would continue to promote stable economic development.



In the first 11 months of 2018, GDP rose by 6.7 per cent, inflation stood at 2.1 per cent, unemployment stood at 4.8 per cent and foreign exchanges reserves remained above the psychologically important US$3 trillion level.



Looking ahead to the coming year, President Xi reminded delegates of his three key policy priorities - fighting pollution, corruption and poverty - and said the year offered challenges and opportunities to build a 'well-off society in an all-round way.'


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