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The following lists highlights from Chinese press reports on Thursday:
- China's foreign exchange reserves stood at CNY3.17 trillion at the end of March, down CNY35 billion or 1.09% from the end of February, according to the China State Administration of Foreign Exchange. The reduction was due to the gain in the U.S. dollar index and a fall in bond prices of major countries, said Deputy Director Wang Chunying. China's strengthening domestic economy will keep the scale of foreign exchange reserves stable, Wang said.
- Chinese local government officials will be held accountable should their governments incur additional implicit debts, Finance Minister Liu Kun wrote in the People's Daily. Local governments should take market-oriented approaches to dealing with defaults and gradually dispose of existing implicit debts, Liu said. Local governments will be gradually given control over revenues from consumption taxes, Liu said.
- China will continue to speed up Internet connections and cut access fees to lower costs for businesses to help develop the digital economy, the State Council said following its weekly executive meeting. The Council urged telecom providers to cut fees for Internet access by 10% for SMEs and give discounts to the elderly, the disabled and other special groups and also improve network services.