Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao (C) talks
with workers as they have supper together at a dining hall of the Qingdao
port in Qingdao, east China's Shandong Province, Jan. 1, 2009. Wen visited
companies, markets, communities and rural areas in Qingdao on Jan. 1-2.
(Xinhua/Yao Dawei) Photo Gallery>>>
BEIJING, Jan. 2 (Xinhua) -- Premier Wen Jiabao has
urged Chinese companies to stress innovation to combat the impact of global
Wen made the remarks as he visited companies,
markets, communities and rural areas in China's eastern Shandong Province over
the first two days of 2009. He sought to reassure people that the economy would
be able to regain steam.
"Try to develop new types of candles to cater to
different cultures, which would capture big market share," Wen said during
avisit to Qingdao Kingking Group, the world's second-largest candle maker.
During a visit to Haier, the country's largest
appliance maker, the premier praised its sales promotion and services in rural
areas as a factor stimulating rural consumption, which he said would help ease
the impact of the global financial crisis.
Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao (C) visits
Yatai electric appliances supermarket that sells subsidized household
appliances in Jimo City under Qingdao, a coastal city in east China's
Shandong Province, Jan. 2, 2009. Wen visited companies, markets,
communities and rural areas in Qingdao on Jan. 1-2. (Xinhua/Yao
China kicked off a subsidized household appliance
program in December 2007 and decided on Wednesday to further expand subsidies
for farmers' purchases from Feb. 1 to boost consumption.
"How Haier is dealing with the global crisis tells us
there is opportunity amid crisis, and the opportunity lies in innovation, which
will not only help shake off the impact of the crisis but also upgrade
enterprises," Wen noted.
He said the country would increase subsidies to 15
billion yuan (2.2 billion U.S. dollars) in 2009 from last year's 9 billion yuan.
It would increase domestic spending by more than 100 billion yuan.
The policy would remain in force for at least five
years, which would increase appliance sales by more than 500 billion yuan, Wen
He highlighted the importance of innovation and
called for enterprises to design and develop high-quality, low-cost products for
Wen also went to a village in Shandong Province to
talk with rural families. He reassured villagers that apart from the expanded
subsidies, the government also encouraged enterprises to purchase old appliances
and allow farmers to trade in older models for new ones as a move to sustain
The premier reiterated "confidence" wherever he went,
saying a solid material foundation, stable financial system, abundant cash flow,
large domestic markets, appropriate macroeconomic policies and others steps
Wen said the State Council, or Cabinet, is drawing up
two major plans.
One involves 10 programs to expand demand, further
detailing and specifying the 10 stimulus measures kicked out last year.
The other includes the readjustment and improvement
of 10 pillar industries. Plans for the development of steel industry and
automobile industry have been rolled out and others are under way.