Transactions on China's mobile payment systems were worth $32 trillion in 2017, almost 30 percent more than in 2016, according to People's Bank of China, the central bank. The number of mobile financial transactions totaled $37.6 billion, up 46 percent year-on-year.
Xiang had served as vice-president of the People's Bank of China, Party secretary and president of Agricultural Bank of China and chairman of the China Insurance Regulatory Commission.
China's use of natural gas surged by 19 percent in 2017, as areas across northern China switched to this relatively clean fossil fuel and away from highly polluting coal in residential heating and industrial uses, according to data from the former Ministry of Environmental Protection, now called the Ministry of Ecology and Environment.
In his response, Putin said Russia-China relations in 2017 achieved new progress, as the volume of two-way trade has seen substantial increases and exchanges in areas of technology, culture and people-to-people exchanges have been vigorous.
Improving people's livelihoods took center stage during President Xi Jinping's major domestic inspection tours last year, highlighting his "people-centered" governance philosophy.