The latest data from the National Bureau of Statistics show that national fixed asset investment (excluding rural households) increased by 10.3% year-on-year from January to July; taking January-July 2019 as the base period, the two-year average growth rate was 4.3%. On the whole, the scale of investment remained to recover steadily, and the investment structure continued to be optimized.
On August 17th, the director from the National Development and Reform Commission stated at a regular press conference of the National Development and Reform Commission that the National Development and Reform Commission approved a total of 8 fixed asset investment projects with a total investment of 58.2 billion yuan in July, mainly in the fields of transportation and energy.
Investment continues to stably recover
According to Luo Yifei, chief statistician of the Investment Department of the National Bureau of Statistics, the investment mainly manifested the following characteristics from January to July:
Investment in high-tech industries has grown rapidly. From January to July, investment in high-tech industries increased by 20.7% year-on-year, and the two-year average growth rate was 14.2%. Investment in high-tech manufacturing increased by 27.1% year-on-year. At the same time, investment in the high-tech service industry increased by 8.8% year-on-year. Among them, the investment in e-commerce service industry increased by 42.7%, and the investment in research and design service industry increased by 27.2%.
Investment in the manufacturing industry is growing well. From January to July, manufacturing investment increased by 17.3% year-on-year, 7.0 percentage points higher than all investment; the two-year average growth rate was 3.1%, 1.1 percentage points faster than the first half of the year, and continued to accelerate after turning from negative to positive from January to May. The investment in the raw material manufacturing industry increased by 19.1% year-on-year, and the investment in the equipment manufacturing industry and consumer goods manufacturing industry increased by 18.2% and 15.2% respectively.
The growth rate of investment in the social sector remained stable. From January to July, investment in the social sector increased by 13.1% year-on-year, 2.8 percentage points faster than total investment; the two-year average growth rate was 10.9%, 0.2 percentage points faster than the first half of the year. Among them, health investment increased by 31.8% year-on-year, and education investment increased by 12.1%.
It is worth noting that private investment has also continued to recover. Luo Yifei said, “from January to July, private investment increased by 13.4% year-on-year which remained the rapid growth trend. Among them, private investment in agriculture, forestry, animal husbandry and fishery increased by 21.2%, private investment in infrastructure increased by 20.1%, and private investment in manufacturing increased by 19.3%.”
A batch of major projects started intensively
2021 is the first year of the implementation of the "14th Five-Year Plan", and some major projects in the "14th Five-Year Plan" will start construction one after another. Recently, major projects in Shanghai, Tianjin, Gansu, Guizhou and other places have started intensively, laying a solid foundation for high-quality economic development.
The third batch of 29 major urban projects in 2021 started on July 21 in Shanghai, involving a total investment of about 21.7 billion yuan, covering municipal roads, medical and health, education, social housing and other sectors. In Tianjin, construction of 446 major projects also accelerated in the second quarter, with 70 major projects of more than 1 billion yuan, accounting for more than 70% of the investment. In Gansu, 381 major projects with a total investment of 269.766 billion yuan were started in the province.
Cong Yi, a professor at the School of Economics of Tianjin University of Finance and Economics, told reporters that investment is not only an important means to maintain the steady growth of the macro economy, but also an important support for promoting the improvement of the economic structure and consolidating high-quality development. Judging from the major projects started this year, whether it is a new type of infrastructure, a new type of urbanization, or the "new infrastructure, new urbanization initiatives and major projects", they all reflect the inherent requirements for high-quality development.
According to Wen Bin, the chief researcher of China Minsheng Bank, new changes in future investment will mainly be reflected in the three major areas of high-tech fields, social and people's livelihood fields, and shortcomings. " In the near future, the growth rate of investment in high-tech industries has continued to be higher than that of fixed asset investment. However, some ‘stuck neck’ problems still need to be solved. A number of key investment projects are expected to emerge in areas such as the transformation and upgrading of traditional industries, high-tech industries and service industries, and innovation and entrepreneurship in the future." Wen Bin said.
Making efforts to "make up for shortcomings" from five major aspects
What are the key directions for investment in the next step? Meng Wei, spokesperson for the National Development and Reform Commission, said that relevant departments will focus on making up for shortcomings and stabilizing investment from five aspects:
Actively promote the implementation of major engineering projects identified in the "14th Five-Year Plan". We must promptly establish a major engineering project implementation promotion mechanism, further subdivide the 102 major projects proposed in the "14th Five-Year Plan" outline into specific construction projects to form a list, strengthen the guarantee of essential factors, and advance the implementation of projects in an orderly manner, so as to realize “starting one batch, putting one batch production, and reserving one batch”.
Taking multiple measures to stabilize manufacturing investment. On the one hand, it actively supports investment in advanced manufacturing, continuously improves and makes good use of mechanisms such as "revealing the rankings" and "horse racing", and speeds up making up for shortcomings in the supply chain of the industrial chain. On the other hand, it guides enterprises to increase investment in technological transformation, strengthen the guidance and incentives of traditional manufacturing carbon emission reduction policies, and promote green and low-carbon investment.
Working hard in the preliminary work of the project. The focus is to urge all localities to increase investment in the preliminary work of the project, and make the preliminary work deep, detailed, and solid. In accordance with laws and regulations, we will speed up the process of project approval, and land use, planning, environmental assessment and other procedures, accelerate preparations for land requisition, demolition, and municipal supporting facilities, and promote a batch of projects to have the conditions to start construction as soon as possible.
Giving full play to the leading role of government investment. In terms of investment within the central budget, we will speed up the implementation of the plan, organize ahead of schedule the preparation of the investment plan within the central budget next year, and concentrate our efforts on big and difficult tasks.
Further mobilizing the enthusiasm of private investment. In order to better play an effective market role, relevant departments will continue to improve policies to support social capital participation, and attract private capital to participate in the construction of municipalities, transportation, ecological environment, and social undertakings to make up for shortcomings. We will standardize and promote the public-private partnership (PPP) model, and steadily carry out pilot projects for real estate investment trust funds (REITs) in the infrastructure sector to revitalize existing assets and form a virtuous circle of investment. (Reporter, Wang Junling)
People's Daily Overseas Edition