New members for China's think tank council

New members for China's think tank council
Chinese Premier Li Keqiang.

The China Center for International Economic Exchanges (CCIEE) elected new members to its council on Saturday as the country steps up efforts to build globally-influential research bodies.

Hu Zucai, deputy director of the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC), was the highest-ranking official elected. Other newly-appointed members include incumbent and retired officials from government agencies, economists and executives of state-owned enterprises.

Chinese Premier Li Keqiang said in a written instruction that Chinese think tanks should strengthen innovative and forward-looking research ability with a focus on the country's reform and sustainable development.

China should develop a new type of think tank with Chinese characteristics that produce high-quality and globally-influential opinions, he said.

Founded in 2009, CCIEE has expanded its membership to officials from the ministries of science and agriculture and representatives from enterprises in key industries.

New members also include researchers and economists to enhance the study of local economic development, according to Zhang Dawei, secretary-general of the body.

Zeng Peiyan, former Chinese vice-premier and chairman of CCIEE, said Chinese think tanks should be committed to making the country's voice heard on major international issues.

Chinese think tanks should also maintain their independent status and make objective observations about China's ongoing reforms and economic transition, he added.

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