China meets 7.5 percent growth target Published: 2014-1-20 14:55:00

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DP growth remains 7.7%
China's economy grew 7.7 percent in 2013, a 14-year low but which is considered  steady growth while the government continues to push forward economic restructuring.

China's GDP up 7.7 pct in 2013
China's economy grew 7.7 percent year on year in 2013, the same as 2012 and beating the government's target of 7.5 percent, according to the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) on January 20.

China's retail sales up 13.1 pct in 2013
China's fixed-asset investment growth cools in 2013
China's industrial output grows 9.7 pct in 2013
China's business climate index drops in Q4


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Agricultural production got another harvest
The total grain output in 2013 was 601.94 million tons, an increase of 12.36 million tons, up by 2.1 percent.

Industrial production grew steadily
The total value added of the industrial enterprises above designated size in 2013 was up by 9.7 percent at comparable prices.

Investment in fixed assets kept a comparatively fast growth
In 2013, the investment in fixed assets (excluding rural households) was 43,652.8 billion yuan, a growth of 19.6 percent (a real growth of 19.2 percent after deducting price factors).

Sales on domestic markets enjoyed a steady growth
In 2013, the total retail sales of consumer goods reached 23,438.0 billion yuan, a nominal annual rise of 13.1 percent (a real growth of 11.5 percent after deducting price factors).

The growth rates of imports and exports picked up to some extent
The total value of imports and exports in 2013 was $4,160.3 billion, an annual increase of 7.6 percent.

The growth of consumer price remained stable
In 2013, the consumer price went up by 2.6 percent year-on-year. Specifically, the price went up by 2.6 percent in urban areas and 2.8 percent in rural areas.

Residents' income continued to increase
In 2013, the per capita total income of urban households was 29,547 yuan.

Money supply maintained a steady growth
By the end of December 2013, the balance of broad money (M2) was 110.65 trillion yuan, a year-on-year growth of 13.6 percent; the balance of narrow money (M1) was 33.73 trillion yuan, up by 9.3 percent; and the balance of cash in circulation (M0) was 5.86 trillion yuan, a rise of 7.1 percent.

Population and employment were generally steady
By the end of 2013, the total population of mainland China was 1,360.72 million (including population of 31 provinces, municipalities and autonomous regions, and servicemen in CPLA; but not including residents in Hong Kong SAR, Macao SAR, Taiwan Province and overseas Chinese), an increase of 6.68 million over that at the end of 2012.
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Zhang Yongjun, expert with China Center for International Economic Exchanges, told CNR that realizing the current full-year growth over 7.5 percent was a hard-won achievement. As we all know, 2013 brought some economic setbacks at both home and abroad. Internationally, the US and some other developed countries are continuing to taper off their quantitative easing programs.

This has influenced China's economy. Meanwhile, major new economies and markets have undergone large fluctuations following their stock market and currency devaluations. In such a context, China has not only overcome the negative effects of the changing international environment, but also successfully maneuvered domestic issues such as local debt and market fluctuations.

Yao Jingyuan, former chief economist with the National Bureau of Statistics said to that the 7.7-percent growth is consistent with the goal set at 7.5 percent last year. It is a considerable achievement as growth is hard to achieve when facing complex international and domestic issues.

"It's worth noting that growth was achieved without massive stimulus and is free from side effects," said Yao.

Growth around 7.5 percent is still a stable and reasonable goal for 2014, while the main goal should be to seek progress while maintaining stability, according to Yao.

He believed lines should be drawn in terms of China's economic growth, such as virulent inflation should be avoided and employment levels left unaffected.

The largest contributor to the 7.7 percent growth was the real estate sector, Ma Guangyuan, an economist, stated on his Sina Weibo account January 20.

According to Ma, following the 7.5 percent growth rate in 2001, this is the lowest of the century. But with initial at projections, 7.5 percent growth was actually higher than expected. However, China's economic growth has slipped below 8 percent since 2012 and will continue to decline to about 7 percent.

The Wall Street Journal
Still, the government should be cautious in its rhetoric about reform to manage expectations, said Andrew Polk, an economist with the Conference Board. "You don't want to focus too much on something you can't fix quickly," he said, adding, "it's a slow, gradual process."

In the coming year, China should be able to count on improved exports if the U.S. and European economies improve, said Royal Bank of Scotland RBS.LN 0.00% economist Louis Kuijs.

"The economy may be a little more robust than people thought coming into 2014. I had thought the monetary tightening in 2013 would pose a downside risk in 2013. The numbers reduce that downside risk," said Tim Condon at ING in Singapore.

"The fact is that the Chinese economy mustn't and can't grow at the double digit rates we're used to seeing. And in some regards slower growth is actually encouraging because it suggests that it's moving to a more sustainable pace,"David Wilder, head of the Beijing bureau of Market News International, a financial information provider, told the BBC.

          Economic Forecasts

China would maintain steady and dynamic economic growth in 2014 on the back of its ongoing reforms, economists said at a forum in Beijing on January 6.


Driven by a private investment boom, trimmed manufactu­ring overcapacity and improved exports, China's economy will grow 8.6 percent in 2014, extending the strong momentum seen in the second half of 2013, Deutsche Bank predicted on January 13.

China's economy is expected to grow by around 7.8 percent in 2014, as both domestic and external demand will be sufficiently stable to maintain the overall economic growth momentum, Bank of Communications (BoCom) said on January 8 in its annual forecast for the country's economy.

★On trade
China will see a better trade environment next year partly due to rising external demand, as economic recovery in some developed nations may accelerate, the People's Daily reported on December 30,2013.

Analysts remained cautiously optimistic over the country's external outlook and exports in 2014, given the coexistence of lingering base-effect distortion and ongoing recovery of the US and European Union (EU) economies.

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