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[ 2014-03-19 15:22] 来源:CNTV     字号 [] [] []  
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China National Radio: There has been growing public complaint about smog. In your government work report, you said the government will declare war against pollution. I wish to ask you what do you mean by that?


Li Keqiang: I said the government will declare war against smog and pollution as a whole, because this has become a serious issue on the top of the minds of our people. For many people, the first thing they do after getting up in the morning is to check the PM2.5 figure for the day. This has become a major issue that concerns our people’s lives. To declare war against smog and other pollution doesn’t mean that we are declaring war against Nature. Rather, what we mean is that we are going to declare war against our own inefficient and unsustainable model of growth and way of life. Last year, the State Council issued a ten-point plan of action on the prevention and control of air pollution. We now conduct PM2.5 monitoring in 161 cities across the country, which is the most extensive scope among all developing countries. This is not just a reminder for our people to take precautionary measures, but also placing additional responsibility on the shoulder of the government. This year we will take further measures. For example, we have set the target of cutting energy intensity by 3.9% on top of the 3.7% reduction we achieved last year. This is equivalent to cutting coal burning by 220 million tons.


In fighting pollution, we need both tough measures and tough regulations. The government will severely punish those illegal emitting activities which harm both nature and human health. And those overseeing agencies which turn a blind eye to polluting activities and fail to perform their overseeing duties will be held accountable. There are complex causes for smog and to tackle this problem will take a long time. But we cannot sit here and wait for wind or rain to drive smog away. We have to take action ourselves. I hope that the government, the businesses and each and every individual of the society will act together and make persistent efforts to win this tough battle against smog. It’s almost time for lunch, but the moderator hopes that I take two more questions. Would you like that? Fine, I’m happy to oblige.


It’s almost time for lunch, but the moderator hopes that I take two more questions. Would you like that? Fine, I’m happy to oblige.


RTL 4: Premier Li, you went to Europe last year to solve the solar panel dispute and also to promote Chinese nuclear power equipments and Chinese high-speed rail. I’d like to know your thoughts on what kind of obstacles you think should be removed for Chinese companies who want to do business in Europe. And in return, how will you address the European concerns about market access to China?


Li Keqiang: To promote Chinese products and safeguard the legitimate rights and interests of Chinese companies overseas is part of my job as Chinese Premier. During my visit to central and eastern Europe last year, I once said to leaders of these countries that of all the high-speed railways and nuclear power plants of the same quality, the Chinese companies can deliver in the fastest way and at the lowest cost. I have such confidence. In upgrading the Chinese economy, we also need to upgrade Chinese exports. We cannot just export toys, apparel or shoes, although they are also necessary. We also need to export Chinese equipment to help Chinese equipment raise its competitiveness as they are tested on the international market. This is also a win-win situation, as among exports of Chinese equipment, many components and parts are sourced globally and some technologies are introduced from overseas. So this brings benefits to all.


Here through you, I wish to convey a message to the Chinese companies. That is: you need to do your best. We have given our word for the quality of Chinese equipment. I hope you will not prove us wrong, and the Chinese and foreign journalists can supervise. You mentioned the trade dispute over photovoltaic products last year. China and the EU are each other’s largest trading partners. It is only natural that there will be some trade frictions between them given the large size of their trade. But as long as the two sides respect each other and engage in proper consultations, problems can be solved. And settlement of last year’s photovoltaic products case is a success story. I don’t want to see that one loses the status of “biggest trading partner” because of those individual cases which account for only a very small percentage of the two-way trade. Talking about China-EU relations, I want to say that both China and the EU are strong advocates of a multi-polar world and investment facilitation. I believe it is an irresistible trend for Chinese and European companies to enter into each other’s markets and make mutual investment. The two sides are now negotiating an investment treaty. I believe that as long as the two sides conduct the negotiation in a fair, reciprocal and facilitating way and create conditions for companies of both sides, there will be even greater mutual investment and deeper economic integration between China and Europe.


China Radio International: A recent opinion poll shows that social security is one of the hot topics among Chinese netizens. Last year, you said that China will build a social safety net to improve people’s livelihood. How has this been progressing and is there any new plan in this regard?


Li Keqiang: Topics of high concern to the people, in particular those related to people’s livelihood, represent priorities on the government work agenda. This year, we have three major tasks. Namely, we need to meet people’s basic living needs. We need to provide a last resort for people to fall back on in case of special difficulty. And we need to promote social fairness. First, we need to ensure people’s basic living needs. We will build a comprehensive social safety net covering, among others, compulsory education, medical care, old-age support and housing. Our basic medical insurance schemes have achieved full coverage. Now basic old-age insurance schemes cover more than 800 million people. We need to make them truly portable and transferable, and further expand their coverage. We will raise the basic pension benefits at an appropriate time this year, and tackle the problem of fragmentation in due course. That is to say, we need to further integrate old-age and medical insurance schemes in urban and rural areas to put in place an integrated social safety net for the entire population.


Second, we need to provide a last resort for people to fall back on in time of special difficulty. As China is still a developing country, our basic welfare benefits are still quite low. But there are these people in the society who run into special difficulty because of serious illnesses or sudden disasters. In such circumstances, basic welfare benefits are no longer enough. They are in need of social assistance. The government must prevent frequent occurrence of such instances in which people become homeless or have to give up seeking medical treatment because they cannot afford it. Just imagine what if such situation happens to ourselves. All government employees must always put such special needs of the people on top of their mind. Therefore, not long ago, we introduced new methods on providing social aid to ensure that people who run into special difficulty will have somewhere to turn to. Third, we need to promote social fairness. The above-mentioned two major tasks are designed to ensure that our people won’t have any worries in seeking employment and starting one’s own business. The government needs to take more effective steps to ensure equal opportunities in finding jobs and level the playing field for people to start their own businesses. The government needs to pay particular attention to ensuring fairness at the starting point, namely, fairness in education. This year we will raise the proportion of rural students from poor areas enrolled in key colleges and universities by over 10%. We will also further improve those poorly-built and low-performing schools in poor rural areas. In a word, the government needs to create conditions to ensure that each and every individual will have an equal shot at a better life through hard work and that fairness and justice are truly realized even at the most primary level of the society. Thank you.


Li Keqiang: The moderator indicates to me that it’s already lunch time. The Chinese people see food as an overriding priority. With so many people at the press conference, I hate to stand between you and your lunch. Thank you for coming to today’s press conference, and thank you for your questions. Thank you all.


After the press conference, as he stood up to leave, Premier Li Keqiang answered questions from two more journalists. When asked whether the central government will introduce more favorable policies for Hong Kong, Premier Li Keqiang said, we will do anything that contributes to the prosperity of Hong Kong. We did so in the past and will continue to do in the future.

(中国日报网英语点津 Helen 编辑)


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