Updated 2:12 PM EST, Wed, Jan 29, 2020

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China's Local Government Officials Told To Sign Written Pledge

Premier Li Keqiang

China's Premier Li Keqiang. REUTERS/Ruben Sprich

As the central government's economic growth measures have been hampered by dereliction of duty, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang has challenged local government officials to sign a written pledge to ensure that they will carry out major policies faithfully.

China Daily reported that Li told those who attended a meeting on clean governance that several large projects and investment plans that the central government had approved were not completed at local level in 2014.

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"How come? The problem originates from the mental outlook of some officials who failed to take their share of the responsibility that they are paid to," Li told the meeting's participants, which include Wang Qishan, head of the Communist Party of China's leading anti-graft agency the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection, and members of the State Council.

Li added that some local government officials were being reluctant to implement major policies of the central government, not caring about their own political milestones.

"Anti-corruption work is still tough. Landslide-style corruption, in which officials at different levels collude with each other and engage in graft together, is being seen in various sectors," Li said.

An analyst said some local government officials in China are reluctant to do their jobs for fear that they might be punished for making wrong decisions.

Li challenged the local government officials to put their pledge into writing to ensure that they will truly carry out the projects initiated and funded by the central government.

The central government has been looking for ways to stir up China's economy, which has been suffering from a slowdown since last year. China's economic growth slumped to the lowest level in 24 years in 2014 with annual GDP expansion of 7.4 percent.

In a recent report, China's State Information Center said gross domestic product of mainland China could grow just 7.1 percent in 2015.

The think tank added that the economic slowdown is directly due to the reduction of China's labor force because domestic and foreign demand still being weak.

The failure of provincial authorities was among those believed to be part of the problem.

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