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Stung by debt, China's economic growth to slow to 6.5% in 2017

21 April 2017

Measuring how bright China appears at night may help provide an accurate gauge of the world's second largest economy, a New York Federal Reserve blog post said Wednesday.

The reading, the fastest increase in 18 months, was above the full-year target of 6.5 percent and the 6.8-percent increase registered in the fourth quarter of 2016. The worldwide agency forecast that India's economic growth will rise gradually to 7.7 per cent in 2019/20, "underpinned by a recovery in private investments".

"This improvement comes primarily from good economic news for Europe and Asia, and within Asia, notably for China and Japan", IMF chief economist Maurice Obstfeld said.

Since Li's admission, Wall Street analysts have constructed their own models of Chinese economic growth by combining elements of the Li Keqiang index with other economic statistics, and all of these measures suggest that Chinese economic growth has been much lower than its official rate especially in 2015 when the true growth figure is believed to be less than 5% or even below 3% compared to the official rate of 6.8%.

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In the wake of the worldwide financial crisis, China's growth has bid farewell to the supercharged rates first recorded in the early 1990s and slowed to medium-high growth, which the country frequently refers to as the "new normal".

In the first quarter of this year, China's imports grew by 31.1 percent year-on-year, 16.3 percentage points higher than its growth in exports, which was 14.8 percent.

In the first quarter, the service sector accounted for 56.5 percent of the overall economy, 17.8 percentage points higher than that of the secondary industry. Such a choice shows that China is a responsible trading power.

China attracted 126 billion US dollars of foreign direct investment in 2016, the largest recipient among developing countries, official data showed.

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China has shifted away from pursuing breakneck expansion to facilitate further reforms as the government trimmed this year's growth goal to around 6.5 percent from a range of 6.5 to 7 percent for 2016.

The pickup in China's economic growth was not a result of short-term monetary stimulus, but rather increasing demand triggered by urbanization and supply-side structural reform, said Zhang Liqun, a researcher with the Development Research Center under the State Council.

Other than spurring growth, the priority for China's economic policies must now be given to furthering supply-side structural reform to lay a solid foundation for medium and long-term development, said Zhang Liqun.

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Stung by debt, China's economic growth to slow to 6.5% in 2017