The Canadian Press - ONLINE EDITION

China says economy shows signs growth is stabilizing after long slowdown

  • Print

BEIJING, China - China's government tried Monday to reassure companies and its public about the economy's health, saying growth is stabilizing after a lengthy decline and should hit the official target of 7.5 per cent for the year.

The announcement by the chief spokesman for the Cabinet's statistics agency was part of official efforts to defuse unease about the country's deepest slump since the 2008 global crisis.

"There are growing signs of stabilization and also of further growth," said the spokesman, Sheng Laiyun, at a news briefing. "We are confident we can hit our full-year growth target."

Sheng gave no updated data but cited previously released figures that showed industrial production and other parts of the economy improved in July.

Economic growth fell to 7.5 per cent in the three months ending in June after declining steadily for 10 straight quarters. Sheng said it was the longest such slowdown since China's market-style reforms began three decades ago.

The International Monetary Fund and private sector analysts have cut this year's growth forecasts for China, though to a still healthy level of close to 8 per cent. Some analysts say growth could dip below 7 per cent in coming quarters.

The slowdown was largely due to government efforts to reduce reliance on trade and investment that drove the past decade's boom and nurture more self-sustaining growth based on domestic consumption.

Still, the downturn has been deeper than forecast, due to unexpectedly weak global demand for Chinese goods. That raised concern about higher unemployment, which could fuel political tensions, but the government says the economy is still generating new jobs.

Sheng also downplayed concern about debts owed by local governments that borrowed heavily over the past decade, in part to pay for building projects under Beijing's stimulus in response to the 2008 crisis. Some analysts worry the economy could suffer if local governments default, hurting the state-owned banking industry.

An audit last year found local governments ran up debts of 10.7 trillion yuan ($1.6 trillion) over the preceding decade, equal to about one-quarter of China's annual economic output.

Sheng said some local governments have paid down their debts while others are rolling out plans to manage them.

"We are monitoring the situation carefully and right now the issue is under control," he said.

Fact Check

Fact Check

Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories?
Please use the form below and let us know.

* Required
  • Please post the headline of the story or the title of the video with the error.

  • Please post exactly what was wrong with the story.

  • Please indicate your source for the correct information.

  • Yes

    No

  • This will only be used to contact you if we have a question about your submission, it will not be used to identify you or be published.

  • Cancel

Having problems with the form?

Contact Us Directly
  • Print

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective April 16, 2010.

letters

Make text: Larger | Smaller

LATEST VIDEO

Inside peek at Real Pirates, new Manitoba Museum exhibit

View more like this

Photo Store Gallery

  • May 22, 2012 - 120522  - Westminster United Church photographed Tuesday May 22, 2012 .  John Woods / Winnipeg Free Press
  • MIKE.DEAL@FREEPRESS.MB.CA 110621 - Tuesday, June 21, 2011 -  Doug Chorney, president Keystone Agricultural Producers flight over South Western Manitoba to check on the condition of farming fields. MIKE DEAL / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS
my2011poy

View More Gallery Photos

Poll

Who will you vote for in Wednesday's mayoral race?

View Results

View Related Story

Ads by Google