China mulls new policies to boost consumption

Updated: 2012-03-02 15:31


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BEIJING - The Ministry of Commerce and other authorities are drafting new policies to spur domestic consumption with the expiration of a previous stimulus package, former Assistant Minister of Commerce Huang Hai said Friday.

Huang didn't reveal any detailed policies, but ruled out the possibility of renewing the previous stimulus package designed to boost the overall consumption of home appliances and automobiles.

"We won't renew those policies, but incentives are possible for energy-efficient and environment protection-related products," said Huang, a member of the 11th National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC), China's top political advisory body.

The CPPCC's annual session is scheduled to open in Beijing on Saturday.

Huang said the public is "very concerned" about tariff cuts and consumption taxes for imported goods.

"All relevant departments should work to retain purchasing power within China. More importantly, China must break the distribution monopoly created by suppliers to prevent the prices of foreign high-end consumables from remaining high after tariff cuts," Huang said.

The government may draft a package of policies to encourage large companies to engage in direct talks with the owners of foreign brands to benefit the public, Huang said.

Figures from the National Bureau of Statistics showed that China's retail sales for consumer goods rose 17.1 percent year-on-year to 18.39 trillion yuan in 2011, slower than the 18.3 percent seen in 2010.

Huang attributed the slower expansion to the expiration of the previous stimulus package, which was launched following the 2008 financial crisis and largely applied to home appliances and automobiles.