BEIJING, March 15 (Xinhua) -- Chinese Premier Li Keqiang said Friday that the country is determined to implement larger scale tax and fee cuts this year as a key countermeasure against downward economic pressure.
The move is expected to deliver a dividend of nearly two trillion yuan (about 297 billion U.S. dollars) to the companies, Li said at a press conference after the conclusion of the annual session of China's national legislature.
"We are going to cut value-added tax rates for manufacturing and other basic sectors, as well as for small and medium-sized companies, the largest providers of jobs in our country, in a meaningful way," he said. "This will create a more enabling environment for companies and in effect cultivate our tax sources."
Noting that the reform requires exceptional courage and determination, Li said the government must live on a tight budget given the drop in fiscal revenues.
"This is not something taking an overdraft on our future, but nurturing a better tomorrow," he said.