Wang Guoqing answers questions from journalists at a news briefing for CPPCC annual session in Beijing on Wednesday. [Photo by Zou Hong/China Daily]
(2016-03-02)The Fourth Session of the 12th Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) National Committee held a press conference at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing on Wednesday where spokesman Wang Guoqing answered questions from foreign and local reporters. Here are some of the highlights.
Ten major issues you should not miss
Air pollution is essentially a problem of development. The fight is one that requires patience and sense. China has made many efforts to clean the air, but more should be done. With concerted efforts, blue skies and white clouds in daytime and sparkling stars at night are not far away.
About South China Sea
The South China Sea should be a sea of peace, friendship and cooperation. It should not be used by other countries as a pretext or tool to contain China’s development.
About Chinese economy
I am sure that the Chinese economy can achieve medium-high growth. Viewed against the backdrop of the performance of international economies, China's 6.9-percent growth in 2015 is outstanding, and the economy is expanding.
About foreign investment
China will continue to create a good environment for foreign-funded firms and protect their legal interests instead of altering its policy of attracting foreign investment. I believe China will continue to be the world's popular destination for investment and profit can be made here.
About Hong Kong
Hong Kong is an open and diversified society, and it is perfectly normal that people with different backgrounds hold different views toward economic, political and social issues. But it is the common aspiration of all Hong Kong people and in the fundamental interests of the city to seek development, stability and harmony.
We firmly oppose illegal and even violent actions taken by a small number of people to mess things up in Hong Kong and sabotage cooperation and exchanges between the mainland and Hong Kong.
Hong Kong's long-term stability and prosperity is an overarching mission of the "one country, two systems" principle, and an important part of the Chinese Dream.
The central government will continue to fight corruption and keep a high-handed posture against corruption so as to bring people more sense of gain.
About international cooperation
In the face of sluggish global economic recovery, nations should cooperate to work toward common interests. Exports of Chinese equipment and production capacity will not only help China tackle downward pressure but also serve as a boon for importers to prop up growth and increase employment. After decades of rapid economic advancement, China has developed huge capacity in producing iron and steel, which are urgently needed in many less-developed economies.
About blacklisted tourists
It remains an arduous task to make China, especially a developing and changing China, understood by the world. China is like a thick book and each individual is a page of it. I am of the view that each and every Chinese citizen should be more responsible for more active about and capable of telling stories about China.
About private business
A sound environment should be created to protect entrepreneurs' property rights and returns on innovation.
I think job losses among some employees are a temporary phenomenon, said Wang.
Veteran reporter's new role
Wang Guoqing is no stranger when it comes to asking questions.
But on Wednesday, the veteran journalist found himself on the receiving end of them in his new role as spokesman for the annual session of China's top advisory body.
The 63-year-old made his debut at a news conference as the 14th spokesman, since 1983, for the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference's annual session.
Wang, who worked for China Radio International from 1978 to 2000, covered the two sessions of the top legislature and advisory body many times in the 1980s.
He once worked as CRI's chief Washington correspondent.
Experienced in international publicity, Wang said he is not afraid of answering sensitive questions in his new role.
"The more sensitive the questions are, the more effort we should put into answering them. So long as it doesn't undermine national security and stability, there is nothing that cannot be discussed," he told Xinhua News Agency.
Wang graduated from Shanghai International Studies University in the 1970s, majoring in English, and studied at McGill University in Canada from 1976 to 1978.
In 2000, he started working for the State Council Information Office and the Publicity Department of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China.
In 2013, he became vice-chairman of the CPPCC's Foreign Affairs Committee.
He said his new role as spokesman is quite challenging. For the past month, he has worked more than 10 hours a day for many days, consulting officials from more than 60 government departments and collecting more than 1,400 questions.