Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao Friday described the year 2003 as a significant and unusual year for China, in which the country made remarkable achievements in reform and opening up and in the modernization drive.
"We braved difficulties and hardships in an indomitable and innovative spirit and made important advances in building a moderately prosperous society in all respects," he said in the Report on the Work of the Government delivered at the opening of the Second Session of the Tenth National People's Congress.
Wen listed last year's achievements as follows:
-- China won a great victory in the fight against the severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS).
-- The economy grew rapidly. China's GDP increased by 9.1 percent over the previous year and reached 11.67 trillion yuan. Per capita GDP passed the important benchmark of 1,000 US dollars, calculated at the current exchange rate.
-- China's financial strength grew noticeably. Total government revenue was 2.17 trillion yuan, 278.7 billion yuan more than the previous year.
-- Foreign trade expanded significantly. Total import and export volume was 851.2 billion US dollars, 37.1 percent more than the previous year, raising China from fifth to fourth place in the world.
-- China created more jobs than planned. Some 8.59 million urban residents became employed with 4.4 million laid-off workers reemployed.
-- People's incomes increased. Urban per capita disposable income grew by 9 percent in real terms, and rural per capita net income rose by 4.3 percent in real terms.
-- China's first manned spaceflight was a complete success.
"These achievements indicate that China's overall national strength has reached new heights," the premier said, adding, "They have boosted the confidence and courage of all the Chinese people to continue forging ahead."
He attributed the accomplishments to the efforts of governments at all levels and the people to put into practice the guiding principles of the 16th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC) under the leadership of the CPC and the guidance of Deng Xiaoping Theory and the important thought of Three Represents, in the face of a complex and volatile international situation, the unexpected outbreak of SARS and frequent natural disasters.