New York News
Li made these remarks while presiding over a seminar on the development of advanced manufacturing. This was after he concluded a two-day visit to Hunan province for investigation and research purposes — believed to be his first inspection trip after becoming China’s new premier.
While in Changsha, Hunan’s capital, the premier noted that enterprises play a guiding role in sci-tech innovation. He emphasized the need to build world-class enterprises with outstanding products and brands, as well as specialized and sophisticated companies that produce new and unique products.
Recently, Ginger River Review published a near-full translation of the transcript of Li Qiang’s introductory press conference, which attracted a lot of attention from China observers. What follows is a compilation of highlights from interviews and reports about the premier from Chinese officials, scholars, entrepreneurs, and media outlets.
This compilation sheds light on Li Qiang’s views on topics including reform and opening up, the development of private enterprises, and foreign investment. They also offer insight into how the premier’s prior working experience helps him understand the priorities of the economy, society, and the people. Overall, we hope this is a valuable resource for those seeking to understand Li Qiang’s working style and his vision.
On reform and opening up
Wèi Jiànguó 魏建国, Vice Chairman of the China Center for International Economic Exchanges (CCIEE) and former Vice Minister of Commerce, said in an interview with Chinese news outlet Cailianshe that Premier Li Qiang comes from the forefront of China’s reform and opening up, allowing him to have a good understanding of the situation, identify key problems, and always find ways to address them. Additionally, he impressed people with his affability and confidence.
Wáng Huīyào 王辉耀, a former counselor for the State Council and president of the Beijing-based think tank Center for China and Globalization (CCG), told China Daily the newly appointed senior officials had grown their expertise during the country’s reform and opening up, which started over four decades ago.
“They are familiar with the market economy and the private sector and have rich experience working at local levels. We have reason to believe that they will play a greater role in contributing to the Chinese path to modernization,” Wang said.
Li Qiang on reform and opening up:
“We will remain steadfast in deepening reform and opening up. As we often say, reform and opening up is a crucial move that has made China what it is today…China will only open itself wider to the world. We will provide a better environment and better services to all. An open China welcomes investors from all over the world.”
On Li Qiang’s work experience
Zhèng Yǒngnián 郑永年, an influential professor of contemporary China studies, in his review of the recently concluded Two Sessions political meeting, said that Li Qiang and his team have at least two defining features. First, most of them have an educational background in science, engineering, and economics, which reflects what the academic circle call “technocratic” characteristics.
Second, the new leadership has had rich work experience, from local to central governments, and from coastal to inland places. (Check out the list of key officials of China’s State Council.)
Professor Zheng said that Li Qiang’s own work experience gives people the feeling that “the future can be expected.” Like General Secretary Xí Jìnpíng 习近平, Li also worked his way up from the most basic level of Chinese society. He was once a worker, and was later admitted to Zhejiang Agricultural University as a major in agricultural machinery. He started as part of a grassroots county youth league committee, then successively served as secretary of the Wenzhou Municipal Party Committee, deputy secretary of the Zhejiang Provincial Party Committee, secretary of the Jiangsu Provincial Party Committee, and secretary of the Shanghai Municipal Party Committee.
Especially from his political experience in Zhejiang, it can be seen that he attaches great importance to the private economy. When he was in Zhejiang, he emphasized, “The next step for Zhejiang’s private economy depends on the main body of the economy — private enterprises, especially whether private entrepreneurs are still very active and creative.”
Li Qiang on his experience in local governments:
I have worked in local governments for a long time. My experience is that when you sit in the office, you see lots of problems. But when you reach out to the people, you see all kinds of solutions.
On Li Qiang’s Wenzhou background
Zheng Yongnian: Premier Li keeps a low profile and applies a pragmatic approach. He is a typical problem-solver, which means