Xi and Li speaking from different scripts in China

China will spur job creation through fiscal and monetary policies in response to a foundering economy caused by the government’s dogged insistence on maintaining a “zero-Covid” policy amid virus outbreaks and shifting dynamics in the international environment.

China’s State Council has called for more job creation in its weekly executive meetings for three consecutive weeks. Premier Li Keqiang said on Wednesday (May 13) the government would adopt new policies that prioritize employment creation, mobilize existing assets, broaden the channels for private investment and expand effective investment.

Li’s comments came after the General Administration of Customs said on Monday the year-on-year growth rate of China’s exports contracted to 3.9% in April from 14.7% in March. This week, the People’s Bank of China (PBoC) allowed the yuan to further depreciate by about 1.8% against the United States dollar to boost exports and slow capital outflows.