Li Dongsheng (left), CEO of TCL, Li Shufu (center), chairman of Zhejiang Geely Holding Group, and Robin Li, chairman and CEO of Baidu Inc. (Photo provided to China Daily)
Internet and innovative companies are recognized as key players in China's reform and opening-up, with the heads of tech giants and innovative private firms being praised as innovators and contributors to the country's 40-year economic rise.
Li Dongsheng, chairman and CEO of consumer electronics giant TCL, said that he was reassured by President Xi Jinping's speech on reform and opening-up. "As representatives of entrepreneurs, we feel assured of our important role in the country's economic growth and will continue to contribute our strength to that."
The comments came after Xi reaffirmed China's commitment to open up even more to the outside world at a grand gathering on Tuesday at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing to mark the 40th anniversary of the country's reform and opening-up.
A total of 100 Chinese dignitaries, including the heads of the country's three major Chinese internet giants, collectively known as BAT, were awarded reform pioneer medals.
Robin Li, chairman and CEO of Baidu Inc, said that he was heartened by the top leadership's emphasis on the spirit of the reform and opening-up, which has close ties with the development of Baidu.
"It is this new era that helped me to achieve my life value and drove the company to overcome difficulties to become a company able to make contributions to the overall industry and society," said Li.
At the meeting, Xi also pledged to support the building of an open, transparent, inclusive and nondiscriminatory multilateral trading system, facilitate trade and investment, and promote more openness amid ongoing economic globalization.
Over the past 40 years, China has recorded an average annual GDP growth rate of around 9.5 percent, which contributed over 30 percent to global economic growth, Xinhua reported.
Li Shufu, chairman of Chinese automaker Zhejiang Geely Holding Group, said Xi's speech inspired the company to enhance its presence in the global arena.
"We will continue to help develop the country's automobile industry and provide users with made-in-China high-tech vehicles of high-quality and high added-value," he said.
"We hope to elevate China's automobile industry to the mid to high end of the global value chain," he added.
Jiang Qiping, a senior researcher at the Center for Informatization Study at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, noted that internet and innovative companies are injecting new impetus to the country's reform and opening-up.
"These companies have helped improve the efficiency of traditional industries by leveraging cutting-edge technologies and new business models. They have also brought benefits to more people, adding new force to the country's economic growth," he said.