China's Li says reducing excess capacity is key task in supply-side reform

BEIJING (Reuters) - China’s Premier Li Keqiang said that reducing excess capacity in industry remains the key task in carrying out supply-side reform.

The government is looking at multiple ways of effectively lowering leverage levels and debt burdens at firms in sectors with excess capacity, Li said according to a statement published on the government’s website on Tuesday.

China will ensure that workers whose jobs will be affected by restructuring in those sectors will not be left unemployed, he added.

China has vowed to tackle price-sapping supply gluts in major industrial sectors, and said in February that it would close 100 million-150 million tonnes of steel capacity and 500 million tonnes of coal production in the coming three to five years.

Reporting by Beijing Monitoring Desk; Editing by Jacqueline Wong