China’s 2022 “Two Sessions”: Setting The Tone For Full Recovery And Beyond

7 Apr 2022

Despite of the long-term impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, the Asia Pacific region is on a positive path to recovery and achieving economic stability. China rose out of the pandemic slump and recorded 8% GDP growth in 2021, but this period of recovery is still full of uncertainties, as there have been waves of outbreaks across many cities in China since the beginning of 2022.

 

The annual “Two Sessions” (officially referred to as the National People’s Congress and the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference), was held in March to lay out the guidelines for the development of macro and micro policies, and to showcase a framework of long-term strategic development goals that may impact business decisions, both nationally and internationally.

 

In this summary report prepared by Sinclair’s PR Agency China team, we share some of the key highlights of the Two Sessions, by breaking down the potential business and communications opportunities for international businesses.

 

Key Tasks Outlined for 2022

  • GDP: Growth target set at 5.5%
  • Consumption & Income: Increase in CPI to be maintained at 3%
  • Employment: Create at least 11 million, preferably 13 million, new urban jobs
  • Rural Revitalization: Continuous support of agriculture
  • Technology & Innovation: Encourage development of the digital economy
  • People’s Livelihoods & Welfare: Education equality, urban-rural integration, medical insurance, long-term rental market, pensions
  • Environmental & Green Development: Further improvement in the environment sector and continued reduction in the discharge of major pollutants
  • International Resumption: Steady increases in both the volume and quality of imports and exports
  • Benefiting Enterprises & People: Support inclusive loans to micro and small businesses

 

What Does This Mean for International Brands and Corporations?

 

Bringing Greater Economic Stability Through High-Standard Opening Up: From a perspective of new downward pressure and rising challenges, China has made economic stability a top priority for 2022. Emphasis will be placed on stabilizing growth and maintaining steady development across the six fronts (employment, the financial sector, foreign trade, foreign investment, domestic investment and expectations) and six areas (job security, basic living needs, operations of market entities, food and energy security, stable industrial and supply chains, and the normal functioning of primary-level governments) while carrying out structural adjustment and reform. Moving away from the impact of the pandemic, China has accelerated efforts in the pursuit of high-standard opening up and promoting stable growth of foreign investment and trade. New models of foreign trade will be developed to boost cross-border e-commerce, simplify customs clearance as well as the establishment of international logistic services system to enhance efficiency and reduce costs.

 

International brands will need to think locally, offer high quality products and services, bring their expertise and knowledge into the China market and play a part in accelerating overall national development. Another consideration is how brands will be able to align their strategy to cultivate China’s regional goals, such as the development of the Greater Bay Area.

 

The Balance of Tech Innovation and Environmental Protection: As China enters a high-quality development stage, this year brings an emphasized commitment to adherence of the innovation-driven development strategy and utilising innovation as the fundamental driving force to promote the development of the economy. The plan highlights the significance of the digital economy and the desire to achieve growth in this arena, urges efforts to bolster the integration of new infrastructures like smart cities, digital villages, digital industry, integrated national system of big data centers, and 5G, as the main themes of the “Digital China” initiative. On the other hand, environmental protection continues to be one of the key areas of focus in order to promote high quality development. The integration of digital technology with green manufacturing will be conducive to achieving the dual carbon goals set out by the government.

Fostering Happier Livelihoods: China has faced significant ongoing social issues, such as unbalanced education and an aging population, all against the backdrop of the pandemic and its associated impact. This year’s “Two Sessions” has pledged efforts to improve people’s wellbeing and resolve issues at hand that are of concern to the public. The desire to achieve common prosperity are of paramount importance. Brands that are able to tailor products and services to enrich the intellectual and cultural aspects of people’s lives will be favoured. Additionally, building a strong and forward-thinking brand image as an employer that supports China’s employment stability goal is extremely crucial.

 

This insights article is based on our ‘China’s 2022 “Two Sessions”: Setting The Tone For Full Recovery And Beyond’ report. To download in full, please visit the link here.

 

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