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BEIJING: China’s Premier Li Keqiang said on Friday it was not an easy thing to achieve a gross domestic product (GDP) growth goal of around 5.5% in 2022 for an economy as big as China’s.

China on Saturday targeted slower economic growth of around 5.5% this year as headwinds including an uncertain global recovery and a downturn in the country’s vast property sector cast a pall over the world’s second-largest economy.

Li, at a news conference after the close of the country’s annual meeting of parliament, admitted renewed downward risks and challenges facing the economy, which requires larger policy support this year from authorities, including more tax and fee cuts for businesses.

Macroeconomic policies this year are being rolled out not only to cope with short-term pressures, but also to achieve the sustainability of China’s economy, Li said.

“China still has many problems to solve such as climate change, income disparity and debt, and all these issues needs be forcefuly dealt with over the medium and long term, including this year,” he said.

Through stepped-up fiscal and monetary policies, China would like to create over 13 million new urban jobs this year, Li said. That is more ambitious than its target of over 11 million.

The government will also ramp up tax rebates if current ones yield good results, Li added.

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