REPORT ON THE WORK OF THE GOVERNMENT
Delivered at the Fourth Session of the Fifteenth Beijing Municipal People's Congress on January 23, 2021
Chen Jining, Mayor of Beijing
On behalf of the People's Government of Beijing Municipality, I will now report to you on the work of the government for your deliberation and approval. I also invite comments and suggestions from members of the Beijing Municipal Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC).
Part I Economic and Social Development
During the 13th Five-Year Plan Period (2016-2020)
The 13th Five-Year Plan period was a milestone in the development of Beijing. We have been working under the strong leadership of the CPC Central Committee with Comrade Xi Jinping at its core and the direct leadership of the CPC Beijing Municipal Committee. We have also received support and supervision from the Beijing Municipal People's Congress and its Standing Committee. Following Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era, visions outlined at the 19th CPC National Congress, the second, third, fourth and fifth plenary sessions of its 19th Central Committee and instructions of General-Secretary Xi Jinping in his important speeches on Beijing, we have advanced the city's initiatives with a pioneering spirit, fulfilled main objectives and tasks set forth in the 13th Five-Year Plan, made decisive achievements in taking on the "three critical challenges", completed the building of a moderately prosperous society in all respects ahead of other regions, and made solid progress in building a world-class metropolis that is harmonious and livable.
Keeping to the strategic positioning of Beijing as the national capital, we have taken new steps in the transformation and development of the city. Faster steps were taken to strengthen Beijing's position as the "four centers", and the city's capacity to deliver "four services" was significantly enhanced. While reducing the sizes of population, construction land and building area, we have raised labor productivity (as measured by output per worker) from 212,000 yuan in 2015 to over 280,000 yuan. Solid steps have been taken in promoting reduction-based growth of this super large city.
Staying committed to the new development philosophy, we have pushed Beijing's high-quality development to new heights. The GRP has grown from 2.5 trillion yuan to 3.6 trillion yuan, or 24,000 US dollars in per capita terms, meeting the standard for medium-level developed economies. We have made significant progress in improving the business environment and the economic structure. The share of the digital economy in Beijing has reached 38%, ranking among the highest in China.
Following the vision of people-centered development, we have improved people's well-being. Residents' per capita disposable income rose to 69,000 yuan and the average life expectancy rose to 82.43 years. Beijing is among the first in China to put in place an urban-rural unified social security system covering all its residents. It has remained one of the best in China in terms of education, healthcare, cultural, sports and other public services.
With tenacious efforts, we have addressed issues associated with big cities and turned Beijing into a more livable city. We have made impressive progress in ecological conservation. Forestry coverage has reached 44.4%. Traffic congestion has been eased. We have also made significant headway in pollution control. No water body cross-section registers quality lower than Class V. The annual average concentration of fine particulate matters (PM2.5) has dropped accumulatively by 53% to less than 40 μg/m^3. Beijing's success in air pollution prevention and control has been included in UNEP's case studies.
In the past five years, the municipal government has mainly completed the following work.
First, we have highlighted the guiding role of the Master Plan of Beijing (2016-2035) in our effort to improve the city's functions as the national capital.
Critical decisions concerning the planning of the capital have been submitted to the CPC Central Committee for approval. The capital planning system has been substantially improved. We have significantly enhanced the city's capacity to serve as the national political center and delivered quality services to the celebrations of the PRC's 70th anniversary and other major events. As the national cultural center, Beijing has gained more strength and appeal with the establishment of the general framework of "a historical and cultural city with three belts and two zones and upholding core socialist values". We have enhanced the role of Beijing as the center for international exchange and opened the city wider to the world. Great efforts have been made in building Beijing into a national innovation center. As we continue to reform the management system for science and technology, improve the innovation ecosystem and inspire greater creativity, a large number of key proprietary technologies have been developed, making Beijing one of the most vibrant cities in the world for innovation and entrepreneurship.
Second, we have relieved Beijing of functions nonessential for the capital and pushed for Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei coordinated development with solid steps.
We have carried out special operations to upgrade the city through function transfer and remediation. The tasks of shutting down businesses in general manufacturing and relocating regional wholesale markets have been basically completed. The appearance of 3,500 backstreets and alleys has been improved. Over 6,000 convenience stores have been built or upgraded, making the city more convenient and livable for the people. The city's Municipal Administrative Center (BMC) has taken shape. The first group of municipal-level government bodies have moved in smoothly. The Central Green Forest Park has opened. We have offered support to the development of the Xiong'an New Area, opened Beijing Daxing International Airport, and achieved significant results in regional coordinated development in priority areas.
Preparations for the Beijing 2022 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games have been going on well. Construction of all competition venues has been completed. Beijing-Zhangjiakou High-Speed Railway and Beijing-Chongli Expressway have been put into operation. The "High-tech Olympics" program has been inaugurated. The vision, emblem and mascots of Beijing 2022 were unveiled. We have launched a public engagement program to encourage participation in ice and snow sports.
Third, we have continued to implement the innovation-driven development strategy and promoted high-quality economic growth.
Progress has been made in nurturing the "three science cities and one hi-tech area" and developing the Zhongguancun National Innovation Demonstration Zone. We have pooled resources from the whole city in building national laboratories, five big-science facilities including the integrated experimental device for extreme conditions, and 13 cross-disciplinary research platforms including research in materials genomes. Seizing the opportunities, we opened a number of new-type R&D institutions on quantum, brain research, etc., and advanced key projects in such areas as integrated circuits, artificial intelligence and blockchain technology. The Regulations on Promoting Commercialization of Research Results have been implemented. The Policy Measures on Deepening Reform of the Science and Technology System and Accelerating the Building of Beijing as the National Innovation Center (also known as the 30-Article Policy) and 13 documents on promoting high-end, precision and sophisticated industries have been formulated and implemented. Beijing now hosts 29,000 national-level high-tech enterprises. It also hosts 93 unicorns, more than any other cities in the world. The supply-side structural reform has been deepened. The new generation of information technology and the pharmaceutical and healthcare industry continue to be the double growth engines for the economy. The value added of high-tech industries and strategic emerging industries has accumulatively grown by 56.9% and 58.5% respectively, and that of modern service sectors such as finance, technology and information now accounts for a greater share of the GRP, reflecting a fast emerging economic structure centering on high-end, precision and sophisticated industries.
Fourth, we have further advanced reform and opening-up to create a world-class business environment.
We have advanced reform to improve the city's business environment by steadily upgrading the policy package from version 1.0 to 4.0. Online and "All in One Go" government services are now available for 98% of the public service items, reducing costs and uncertainties for businesses and individuals. We have fully implemented national policies on tax and fee reduction, thus removing a financial burden off businesses and individuals of over 470 billion yuan. Reforms on state-owned assets management and SOEs have moved forward. NAURA and other SOEs have become reform examples and the strengths and competitiveness of the state-owned sector have grown remarkably. The integrated pilot program for further opening Beijing's services sector has been launched. A total of 403 new measures have taken effect and a large number of iconic foreign-invested enterprises have registered in Beijing. The city now accounts for about 1/5 of China's trade in services. Construction has started for the Integrated National Demonstration Zone for Opening up the Services Sector and the China (Beijing) Pilot Free Trade Zone.
Fifth, we have strengthened efforts in super-large city governance to make Beijing more harmonious and livable.
We have improved precision governance of Beijing with meticulous efforts. Public concerns are addressed through the mechanisms of "quick answer to community calls" and "swift response to public complaints". We have introduced comprehensive transit governance through a wide range of measures that increased supply, controlled demand and strengthened regulation. The slow transportation system has been upgraded. The integration of high-speed rail, inter-city rail, suburban railway and metro is well underway. The total service mileage of urban rail transit has reached 727 kilometers. A total of 197 collector roads have been constructed, and 943 frequently congested road sections have been addressed through a tiered approach. The parking order has been improved and green commuting has become a way of life for many people.
We have tightened regulation on non-road mobile machinery and phased out 1.09 million old motor vehicles. The dust fall has dropped from 7.5 tons/km^2 per month in 2018 to 5.1 tons/km^2. Sewage disposal rate has gone up to 95%. The regulations on municipal solid waste and property management have come into force. The average daily amount of sorted domestic kitchen waste has increased by 12.7 times compared with the period before the regulations were implemented, and the coverage of property management service has reached 90.9%. A total of 433 old and run-down communities have been renovated and 1,843 lifts have been installed in old residential buildings. We have vigorously carried out the "Count-Me-In" voluntary service initiative at the Huilongguan and Tiantongyuan area, and completed the tasks set in the first three-year action plan for this area.
Sixth, we have fully implemented the rural revitalization strategy to balance urban and rural development.
Agriculture has been better integrated with the technology and service sectors to generate more income for farmers. Annual average growth of rural residents' per capita disposable income has outpaced that of urban residents. The target of improving the living environment for 3,254 villages has been basically met. Substantial progress has been made in building a beautiful countryside. Rural reform has deepened. We have prevented farmland from being used for non-agricultural purposes by adopting the management rules on rural homesteads and housing construction, removing the so-called "green shelters" illegally built on farmland and rectifying other illegal acts in planning and use of natural resources. The Three-year Action Plan for Faster Development in the Southern Part of Beijing (2018—2020) has been completed. The new Shougang area has become a popular tourist destination promoted by social media influencers. We have largely completed urbanization of 6 rural townships in the first greenbelt area and continued to increase transfer payments to eco-conservation areas as a compensation to those who protect the ecology.
We have fulfilled the development assistance tasks assigned by the central government and helped 73 partner banners and counties and over 2 million people there out of poverty. We have strengthened efforts to help low-income rural households in Beijing, raise their income above the low-income line and cut the number of low-income villages to zero.
Seventh, we have improved government service through the "seven accesses" and "five expectations" initiatives to improve our people's well-being.
Under the policy of prioritizing employment, we have helped 742,000 disadvantaged people find jobs and supported flexible employment through multiple channels. The surveyed urban unemployment rate has been kept under 5%. Budgetary expenditure on pre-school education has increased by a large margin, creating another 230,000 places in kindergartens. A total of 126 primary and middle schools have been built or upgraded. More support has been given to institutions of higher learning in Beijing that are on the "Double First Class" lists. The reform of separating prescription from drug sales and the coordinated reform on hospital service and medical consumables price have been successful, further cutting medical expenditure for patients. We have set up a home-based elderly care service system supported by the government at the community, sub-district, district and municipal levels and opened over 1,000 community-based elderly care and service stations. Social relief policies have been harmonized and the average subsistence allowance has increased to 1,170 yuan per month. Supply of housing for low-income groups has gone up. A total of 414,000 units of government-subsidized housing of various types have been delivered. Sports development has gained momentum. In the past five years, we have delivered, with dedicated efforts, 152 practical services important for people's life.
As special campaigns on workplace safety and hazards removal have been carried out, workplace related accidents and deaths have fallen by 33.2% and 35.4% respectively. A robust financial regulatory system and a financial risks mitigation mechanism are in place, defusing in an orderly way existing financial risks and forestalling the occurrence of new ones. We have strengthened efforts in risk screening and mitigation and organized special campaigns to combat organized crimes and root out local mafia, contributing to a harmonious and secure city. Initiatives on defense mobilization and mutual support between the military and civilians have proved successful. A veteran service system has been basically established. Civil air defense capabilities and civil-military integration have been further strengthened. Fresh progress has been made in affairs concerning women, children, ethnic minorities, religion and overseas Chinese.
Eighth, we have resolutely followed the requirement on full and rigorous governance over the Party and strengthened the government's capacity.
We have had trainings on Party discipline compliance and thematic campaigns to remind ourselves of our party's founding mission. In the past five years, we have processed 18 motions and 4,722 suggestions raised by deputies to the Municipal People's Congress and 4,893 proposals made by Municipal CPPCC Committee members and submitted drafts of 43 local regulations to the Standing Committee of the Municipal People's Congress for deliberation. We have smoothly completed the municipal and district-level institutional reform and advanced joint law enforcement reform. Being aware of the tight budget, we have extended the total-cost and performance-based budgeting to all areas and saved 26.14 billion yuan, cut general expenditures by 15.9 billion yuan and reduced spending on official overseas visits, vehicles, and hospitality by 39.8%. With the removal of unnecessary formalities and bureaucracy, we have cut the number of forms communities are required to fill from 44 to 3 and citywide evaluation items from 75 to 16, and removed all certification items required by the city and district level governments. We have made continuous efforts to foster a healthy political culture of integrity and honesty by assuming responsibilities for enforcing full and rigorous Party governance and expanding the scope and depth of auditing-based oversight.
2020 was a year like no other. Globally, the situation was grave and complex; at home, we faced daunting tasks of reform, development and maintaining stability. On top of that, Covid-19 hit hard. General-secretary Xi Jinping has personally directed nationwide responses. He twice visited frontline healthcare workers in Beijing. His important instructions helped us win this all-out war against the pandemic and succeed on all fronts of the capital city. Our top priority has been to control Covid-19 and save lives. Under the command of the central leadership, we strengthened confidence and stayed united, mounted a targeted defense against the disease enabled by science-based decision-making, and scored major victories in curbing inbound cases and the Xinfadi wholesale market cluster. Initiatives and action plans have been rolled out to strengthen the public health emergency management system, which will help consolidate the victory in Covid-19 prevention and control.
As we fought the virus, we also advanced economic and social development. We managed to stabilize the "six fronts", guarantee the "six priorities" and give support to market players, who hold the key to job security and people's life. We promptly introduced policies to help businesses in distress and did our best to reopen the economy towards reaching full production capacity. Last year, tax and fee reductions increased by over 200 billion yuan; 148.24 billion yuan in social security contributions was reduced, exempted or given a grace period; micro-, small- and medium-sized enterprises saved 8.45 billion yuan in the form of reduced or exempted rents; 4.76 billion yuan of unemployment insurance premium was refunded to businesses; 7.27 billion yuan was paid out as post allowance and social security contribution subsidy.
We saw to it that essential, everyday supplies were available at stable prices and bulk commodities were well stocked and dispatched. A total of 170 million yuan of temporary price subsidy was provided under an improved emergency relief program to households in difficulty and entitled groups. We worked in every possible way to stabilize investment and promote consumption. The policy of promoting new forms and models of business in five areas was rolled out in response to changing circumstances and to turn a crisis into an opportunity for high-quality development. As a result, the economy improved by quarter, providing strong support for people's well-being. According to preliminary calculations, the GRP grew by 1.2%; the general public budget revenue stood at 548.39 billion yuan, down 5.7%; both were above the moderated targets for the year. A total of 261,000 urban jobs were created, and consumer price rise was 1.7%.
We traveled an extraordinary journey to win these results. When faced with adversity and crisis, our people were united as one to fight and overcome difficulties. They showed an admirable understanding of the Party and government. They have demonstrated solidarity and provided mutual support. Especially deserving our respect were those who worked on the frontline and came to people's rescue wherever and whenever the coronavirus hit. They put their lives on the line. They were the most beautiful guardians of our homes. We commend their selflessness, dedication, and love for the country.
In the past five years, our work focused on "what the national capital should be like and how to build it". We made concerted efforts against all odds and scored major progress in reform, opening-up and modernization. Our great city has undergone profound transformation. The achievements are attributable to the strong leadership of the CPC Central Committee led by General-Secretary Xi Jinping and the guidance of Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era. They are also attributable to the support of all ethnic groups across the country, all sectors of society, and particularly the resolute and tenacious efforts of the people in Beijing. Here, on behalf of the People's Government of Beijing Municipality, I would like to express our heart-felt thanks to all people of Beijing, to deputies of the Municipal People's Congress and members of the CPPCC Beijing Municipal Committee, to other political parties, people's organizations and personages from all sectors of society, to all CPC central organs and central government departments, to other municipalities, provinces, and autonomous regions, to officers as well as rank-and-file members of the Chinese People's Liberation Army and the People's Armed Police Force based in Beijing, and to our fellow countrymen and women in Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan and overseas Chinese and international friends who have cared for and given support to the capital's development.
While being aware of our achievements, we should also be cool-headed. There are still uncertainties about the pandemic and in the external environment. The foundation for overall economic recovery remains weak. Bottlenecks in core technologies are serious. Businesses are still struggling with difficulties. The consumer market is not fully recovered. The government is facing mounting pressure in increasing revenue. Precision governance needs to be improved. Heavy tasks remain for urban renewal under the philosophy of reduction-based development. There are still gaps in development between urban and rural areas and among sub-regions as well as weaknesses in public services and public security. The overall competency of officials is not satisfactory. Great efforts are needed to modernize the governance system and enhance governance capacity. We must work hard and take effective measures to overcome all these challenges.