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Coronavirus

Chinese Premier Li Keqiang Says China Has Made Solid Progress in Fighting the Coronavirus

BEIJING — Chinese Premier Li Keqiang says China has made solid progress in fighting the coronavirus outbreak, but must “redouble our efforts to minimize the losses … and fulfill the targets and tasks for economic and social development this year.”

In his address Friday to the annual session of China’s ceremonial parliament, Li called the outbreak the “fastest spreading, most extensive, and most challenging public health emergency China has encountered since the founding of the People’s Republic” in 1949.

With the pandemic still lingering, “the tasks we face in promoting development are immense,” Li said. China, he said, wishes to strengthen cooperation with other countries on countering the virus, promoting stability in the global economy and “uphold the international system with the United Nations at its core and an international order based on international law.”

As with most countries, the outbreak has had a devastating effect on China’s economy and Li’s speech did not offer the usual target figure for economic growth, while saying the already heavily indebted government would run a deficit above 3.6 percent for the year as it seeks to mitigate the effects of the outbreak.

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