(Bloomberg) -- Chinese President Xi Jinping called for greater opening up of the world’s second-biggest economy to focus on foreign cooperation in areas including trade and investment.

“In building a new development pattern and promoting structural opening up, key areas of foreign exchange and cooperation such as investment, trade, and financial innovation should be focused on,” CCTV quoted Xi as saying in a meeting on deepening reform on Tuesday.

China’s attempts to encourage foreign investors have ramped up in recent weeks as it’s become clear that the economy’s recovery following the end of Beijing’s Covid Zero policies is starting to flag. Earlier this week, authorities took a step toward supporting the ailing property market by extending loan relief for developers. Other major components of the economy remain sluggish such as consumer spending and exports, while recent data point to deepening deflation.

A clampdown this year on foreign consultancy firms that help global investors and multinational firms understand China — part of a nationwide anti-espionage campaign — has weakened the appetite for investment from overseas firms. 

During US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen’s recent trip to Beijing, she raised concerns over China’s “non-market” practices and “coercive actions” against American firms. Just days before her arrival, top Communist Party officials visited Bain & Company in Shanghai, their first known trip to the US consultancy’s office in the financial hub since a crackdown on the sector spooked global investors. 

Read more: Bain ‘Warmly Welcomes’ Visit From Shanghai Officials After Probe

During the reform meeting, Xi also called for better regulation of energy consumption and control of carbon emissions in a renewed push for his plan to make the country carbon neutral by 2060.


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