Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

China's Leader Outlines Problems Nation Faces

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

China's Leader Outlines Problems Nation Faces

Article excerpt

Failing state factories, poverty, mass migration and corruption are among the critical challenges facing China following the death of Deng Xiaoping, Premier Li Peng said Saturday.

In his annual report to the 2,901-member legislature, Li pledged cauti ous moves to revive ailing state-run industries, to provide more money for agriculture and to improve welfare measures for the increasingly restive poor and unemployed.

Intense political maneuvering is expected in the run-up to a Communist Party congress in the fall. Although Deng, who died Feb. 19, relinquished all public posts in 1990, he continued to influence policy, protect his proteges and mediate disputes. Li urged the nation to rally around party General Secretary Jiang Zemin, Deng's chosen successor, with "greater efforts to accomplish our work in every field." Many of the reforms Li mentioned had been announced piecemeal by other officials and the state-run media. But Li's is the first full blueprint of the government's plans. …

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