China senior political advisors gathered here Wednesday, to learn about the country's economic situation and developments in the earthquake relief and reconstruction campaign.
Jia Qinglin, chairman of the CPPCC National Committee and member of the Standing Committee of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee Political Bureau, presided over the inaugural session of the second meeting of the Standing Committee of the 11th CPPCC National Committee.
Jia praised CPPCC members for their participation in the earthquake relief campaign.
The relief situation remained serious and the tasks were still very heavy, Jia said. The CPPCC was responsible and duty-bound to contribute to the relief and reconstruction work.
He encouraged the senior advisors to speak their views at the meeting, to provide the Party Central Committee and the State Council with more valuable comments and proposals.
Vice Premier Zhang Dejiang, in a report on the economic situation, said China had experienced the most austere economic and social challenges.
China had maintained stable and relatively fast economic development, thanks to the timely decisions and arrangements by the Party Central Committee and the State Council, as well as the work by local Party committees and governments, said Zhang, also a member of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee.
The country would continue earthquake relief and reconstruction while firmly adhering to promoting economic and social development, so as to achieve social harmony and stability.
Zhang hailed the reform of state-owned enterprises in the past 30 years, and pledged to speed up the reform.
He said China had entered into a crucial stage in developing its social security system, which required increased investment to "allow everyone enjoy fundamental living security, while trying hard to reach the goal of enabling everyone to enjoy schooling, find paid jobs, get medical services, retire on a pension, and live in decent housing".
The meeting is scheduled to last for four days.
(Xinhua News Agency July 3, 2003)