"Stable" will be a key word for China's
economy in 2012. That's the beat set at the annual Central Economic
Work Conference held in Beijing on December 12-14, which reviewed
this year's development and mapped out plans for the next year.
Policymakers at the conference decided to keep
macroeconomic policies stable, seek a stable and relatively fast
economic growth, stabilize consumer prices and maintain social
stability in 2012. On the basis of stability, the government will
transform the development model, deepen reform and improve people's
This year, the Chinese economy has experienced
hard times. As the country enters the 12th Five-Year Plan
(2011-15), economic restructuring becomes the major task, which
will inevitably erode economic growth. GDP growth slowed to 9.1
percent in the third quarter from 9.7 percent in the first quarter
and 9.5 percent in the second.
Although the deceleration is what the
government has anticipated, the weak economic recovery in the
United States and the deteriorating debt crisis in the EU, as well
as numerous domestic small and medium-sized enterprises on the
verge of bankruptcy have worsened the downward spiral. That's why
seeking a stable and relatively fast growth rate tops next year's
Meanwhile, the government has spent the better
part of the year fighting inflation. Although the consumer price
index, a main gauge of inflation, dropped to 4.2 percent in
November from July's peak of 6.5 percent, the 5.5-percent increase
during the January-November period is still well above the
government's 4-percent control target for the year.
The government has showed its determination to
tame rampant inflation next year. Besides stabilizing consumer
prices, policymakers at the conference pledged to keep the prudent
stance of its monetary policy, defying wide expectations of a
loosened one to ease the downward pressure on economic growth.
With the global outlook riddled with
uncertainties, the decision made at the conference to maintain
stability also becomes a stabilizer to the world economy,
alleviating fears for a hard landing of the world's second largest
economy and boosting confidence for the global recovery. In
addition, specific tasks outlined at the conference such as
expanding imports and encouraging foreign investment will continue
benefiting the world.