This is the first year of the 13th Five-Year Plan, and I’m interested to see how strong China’s reforms will be (carried out). Everybody sees that China’s economy has to be reformed, of course there have been many things and a lot of policies on the way. It’s a huge challenge for the Chinese government and for the Chinese people lying ahead, but if there’s a strong will to reform and to give companies and people space to be creative and innovative, maybe there will be more successes in the future. It’s a big thing, if there’s a big number of people losing their jobs (during the economic restructuring). We have similar situations in Germany, by the way, in the past few years, when coal factories and steel factories had to close down. Now it’s similar in China, but you have to find a solution. Something has to be done. China has to be very determined and creative to reform. The situation will not be changed overnight, it will take quite a few years.
-- Mario Schmidt, bureau chief of ARD German Television, Beijing