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China's Vice Premier Wang Yang (Left), President Xi Jinping and Premier Li Keqiang applaud after the foreign investment law was passed during the closing session of the National People's Congress. Photo: Greg Baker/AFP/Getty Images

Chinese officials completed the 2019 National People's Congress on Thursday night. Notably, lawmakers passed a bill to eliminate the requirement that foreign companies transfer proprietary technology to Chinese partners and said it will protect against "illegal government interference."

The big picture: The body also pledged greater cooperation with American and European companies on Belt and Road initiatives.

Over the course of the policy meeting lawmakers passed several proposals:

  • Cut this year's growth target to 6% — 6.5% from "around 6.5%."
  • Increased tax and fee reduction to 2 trillion yuan (about $298 billion) for 2019, from 1.3 trillion yuan in 2018.
  • Pledged more bond issuance by local governments to support higher fiscal spending.
  • Announced China will not give up on "structural deleveraging" and will strive to keep total deleveraging "broadly stable."

Go deeper: Competitors worry that China is using Belt and Road for political gain

Go deeper

CDC: Fully vaccinated people can gather indoors without masks

Photo: Filip Filipovic/Getty Images

People who have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 can take fewer precautions in certain situations, including socializing indoors without masks when in the company of low-risk or other vaccinated individuals, according to guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released Monday.

Why it matters: The report cites early evidence that suggests vaccinated people are less likely to have asymptomatic infection, and are potentially less likely to transmit the virus to other people. At the time of its publication, the CDC said the guidance would apply to about 10% of Americans.

Dan Primack, author of Pro Rata
27 mins ago - Economy & Business

Ripple CEO calls for clearer crypto regulations following SEC lawsuit

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Ripple CEO Brad Garlinghouse tells "Axios on HBO" that if his company loses a lawsuit brought by the SEC, it would put the U.S. cryptocurrency industry at a competitive disadvantage.

Why it matters: Garlinghouse's comments may seem self-serving, but his call for clearer crypto rules is consistent with longstanding entreaties from other industry players.

Republican Sen. Roy Blunt will not seek re-election in 2022

Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

Sen. Roy Blunt (R-Mo.), widely seen as a member of the Republican establishment in Congress, will not run for re-election in 2022, he announced on Twitter Monday.

Why it matters: The 71-year-old senator is the No. 4-ranking Republican in the Senate, and the fifth GOP senator to announce he will not run for re-election in 2022 as the party faces questions about its post-Trump future.