Xi vows to push bold economic, social reforms

Xi vows to push bold economic, social reforms

BEIJING - In an ambitious new road map for reforms in the next decade, the ruling Chinese Communist Party (CCP) pledged to implement wide-ranging economic and social reforms, which would see a relaxation of the country's one-child policy and allow market forces to play a bigger role in the economy.

Some changes include those which Beijing has resisted for decades, such as abolishing the controversial labour reform camps.

On the other hand, Beijing also signalled its intention to tighten Internet controls which President Xi Jinping said could affect national security and social stability.

The announcement came days after a policy summit where Mr Xi appeared to have gained greater power and clout.

In a first, Mr Xi, who took power last November and is set to lead China till 2022, also issued a note explaining the need for the key reforms, effectively staking his political legitimacy on them.

"Looking ahead, if we want to solve our various developmental challenges and address challenges and risks from all sides, we have no choice but to further deepen our reform and opening up."

His note was released Friday by Xinhua news agency, along with a 22,000-word document, known as "decisions" in short, as it detailed the reforms approved at the Third Plenum, or the third full gathering of the Central Committee, which ended on Tuesday.

A 5,000-word communique issued on Tuesday led to slumped markets disappointed with the lack of details. But on Friday, a leaked copy of the "decisions" on social media fuelled the biggest stock market rally in two months.

Analysts say it could be the first time a CCP general secretary is personally explaining the decisions.

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