We owe these achievements to the sound overall decisions made by the CPC Central Committee headed by General Secretary Xi Jinping, and to the concerted and determined efforts of all members of the Party, all members of the armed forces, and all the people of China. On behalf of the State Council, I wish to express our sincere gratitude to the people of all ethnic groups in China including public figures from all sectors of society and to the other parties and the people’s organizations. I express our heartfelt appreciation to our fellow countrymen and women in the Hong Kong and Macao special administrative regions and in Taiwan, and to Chinese nationals overseas. I also wish to express our sincere thanks to the governments, international organizations, and friends from all over the world who have shown understanding and support for China in her endeavor to modernize.
While recognizing our achievements, we are also keenly aware that our country is still confronted with many difficulties and problems in pursuing development. With the decline in global trade, amongst other factors, China experienced a fall in its total imports and exports and failed to reach its growth objective in this regard. Growth in investment is sluggish, overcapacity is a serious problem in certain industries, some enterprises are facing difficulties in production and operations, growth prospects are mixed for different regions and different industries, notable imbalances exist between government revenue and expenditures, the basic institutions for the capital market still need to be improved, and there are latent risks in the financial and other sectors. There are many problems in medical care, education, elderly care, food and medicine safety, income distribution, and urban management that are of concern to the people. The situation remains grave when it comes to environmental pollution, and some regions are frequently hit by severe smog. Particularly distressing, last year saw the sinking of the cruise ship Oriental Star on the Yangtze and the massive explosion in Tianjin Port. The deaths and injuries and the damage and loss of property from these incidents were devastating, and the profound lessons these incidents have taught us should never be forgotten. There are still inadequacies in the work of the government. Some reforms, policies, and measures have not been fully implemented; a small number of government employees either do not or are unable to fulfill their duties, or behave irresponsibly; and the corruption and misconduct in some sectors cannot be ignored. We must be more mindful of the difficulties ahead, more ready to assume responsibility, and more hardworking in ensuring these problems are solved. The wishes of the people should always determine the aim of our governance; we must do our utmost to deliver a strong performance in our work and never fail to live up to the great trust the people have placed in us.