Stimulating consumption key to boosting economic recovery
Since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, domestic consumption has suffered because of increasing uncertainty, weaker income growth expectations, and reduced consumption scenarios. Consumer demand has dipped and micro, small and medium-sized enterprises, individual businesses, and the service sector have faced increasing difficulties.
However, short-term fluctuations have not changed the trend of China's long-term development. With the world's largest middle-income group, and a per capita GDP exceeding $12,000, China is the most promising consumer market in the world.
The key to enhancing people's consumption capacity is to increase their income. Data show that from 2020 to 2021, the average annual real growth rate of per capita disposable income of Chinese residents was 5.1 percent, lower than 7.1 percent from 2013-2019. Therefore, particular efforts should be made to protect market players, increase assistance to MSMEs and individual businesses, and stabilize the job market. In the medium to long term, the country should deepen reform of the income distribution system, activate the working enthusiasms of college graduates, skilled workers, small and medium-sized business owners, migrant workers, and grassroots employees of State-owned enterprises and institutions, and help more low-income people improve their incomes.
Great efforts should be made to improve consumption scenarios and consolidate the foundation of consumption. The country should strengthen the construction of consumption infrastructure and service guarantee capacity, and improve the urban-rural integrated consumption network. It should also work to remove barriers that restrict consumption, improve the system of consumption standards, and strengthen the protection of consumers' rights and interests.
The country should also increase the supply of high-quality products and services, accelerate the cultivation of new types of consumption, and advocate green and low-carbon consumption.