Wen stresses importance of people's livelihood

Updated: 2011-10-22 22:35


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NANNING - Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao said on Saturday that ensuring and improving people's well-being must be put at a highly significant position in the nation's macroeconomic control policies.

"Ensuring people's livelihood is closely related not only to social and economic advancement, but also to the people's benefits as well as social harmony and stability," Wen made these remarks during an inspection tour of Nanning, the host city of the ongoing six-day China-ASEAN Expo, in South China's Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region.

During his tour from Friday to Saturday, Wen made field trips to a job fair, farm produce fairs and residential areas in Nanning in order to acquire detailed information about the consumer prices, employment, and the social security system.

The Chinese government has made containing price increases a top priority this year. The consumer price index (CPI), a major gauge of inflation, rose 6.1 percent year on year last month, easing from 6.7 percent in July, which was the highest level in more than three years.

However, despite the ease, the inflation currently still far exceeds the government's full-year target of 4 percent.

Wen urged the local government to attach greater importance to agricultural production and the supply of farm produce at the markets. He also asked the local authorities to think of ways in reducing logistics costs and to enlarge reserves.

"Measures that are designed to contain prices must be implemented to benefit the grassroots," he said.

Housing is another significant issue facing the locals. China in recent years have been promoting affordable housings for especially the low and medium-income groups. Projects such as low-rent housings and public rental housings are currently developed across the nation. The Chinese government aims to build 10 million affordable housing units this year.

However, lack of funding and inconvenient traffic are hindering this progress in particularly some poverty-stricken regions.

The premier underscored the importance of guaranteeing funding for affordable housing projects and the urgency to speed up establishing and improving relative laws and regulations to regulate the investment, construction, distribution, supervision and rental contracts of affordable housing.

"We aim to make affordable housing a sunshine project that will improve the living conditions of the low and medium-income families," Wen said.

During the tour, Wen also urged college graduates to be down-to-earth and be ready to face challenges.

He encouraged them to consider working for privately-owned companies, as they provide about 80 percent of the nation's employment.