Xi Jinping Image Credit: AFP

Beijing: Chinese President Xi Jinping vowed “unwavering” support for the country’s private sector, the latest response from Beijing to concern over the outlook for the economy.

“Any words and practices that negate and weaken the private economy are wrong,” Xi said in a letter to private entrepreneurs, Xinhua News Agency reported Sunday. “Supporting the development of private enterprises is the Party Central Committee’s consistent policy,” Xi said.

The remarks came after top officials moved to shore up confidence with a rare show of coordinated comments on Friday. Among them, Vice Premier Liu He said China would support the development of private enterprises. At a meeting with policymakers on Saturday, he added that authorities need to accelerate the implementation of measures to encourage healthy development of the economy, according to a statement on the State Council’s website.

China has been facing increasing headwinds this year, including trade tensions with the US and a slumping stock market. The economy grew at the slowest pace since early 2009 in the third quarter, while the stock market has lost more than $3 trillion in value since late January.