China's national legislature opens annual session
China's national legislature opened its annual session on the morning of March 5 in Beijing.
Chinese leaders Xi Jinping, Li Keqiang, Wang Yang, Wang Huning, Zhao Leji, Han Zheng and Wang Qishan attended the opening meeting of the fifth session of the 13th National People's Congress (NPC), held at the Great Hall of the People.
Li Zhanshu, executive chairperson of the presidium for the session, presided over the meeting.
Premier Li Keqiang delivered a government work report on behalf of the State Council to the legislature for deliberation.
In his report, the premier reviewed the government work in 2021, and introduced the overall requirements and policy orientation for economic and social development in 2022.
Hailing the year of 2021 as a milestone, the premier said that the country worked hard as one and once again secured new and major achievements in its development in the past year in the face of complicated and challenging circumstances both in and outside of China, as well as many risks and challenges.
"While recognizing our achievements, we are also very clear about the problems and challenges before us," he said, stressing the need to face problems and challenges squarely, and do the utmost to live up to people's expectations.
A raft of targets were set for the country's development in 2022 in the government work report, including a GDP growth of around 5.5 percent, more than 11 million new urban jobs, and a consumer price index increase of around 3 percent.
The report also listed major tasks for 2022, including achieving stable macroeconomic performance, maintaining job security, deepening reform, and expanding high-level opening up.
NPC deputies reviewed the report on the implementation of the 2021 plan and on the 2022 draft plan for national economic and social development, and the draft plan for national economic and social development in 2022; the report on the execution of the central and local budgets for 2021 and on the draft central and local budgets for 2022, and the draft central and local budgets for 2022.
Wang Chen, vice chairman of the NPC Standing Committee, expounded a draft amendment to the Organic Law of the Local People's Congresses and Local People's Governments, which has been submitted to national lawmakers for review.
Wang also delivered an explanatory speech on a draft decision on the number of deputies to the 14th NPC and their election.
In accordance with the Constitution and relevant laws, the election of deputies to the 14th NPC shall be completed in January 2023 before the incumbent 13th NPC deputies finish their term of office in March 2023, Wang said.
Wang also explained draft methods for the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (SAR) and the Macao SAR to elect their deputies to the 14th NPC.