ROLLS AND COILS: A worker checks the surface of stainless steel wires at Dongbei Special Steel Group's base in Dalian, Liaoning Province. China's industrial output saw solid growth in August (LIU DEBIN)
August's economic data released in early September once again prove that the Chinese economy has regained momentum, a slight to naysayers who have long predicted a hard landing for the world's second largest economy.
The real economy is the foundation of a country's economy, which is directly tied to jobs. According to the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), the purchasing managers' index for the manufacturing sector, rose to 51 in August from 50.3 in July, the highest level since April last year. A reading above 50 indicates expanding activity. Industrial value-added output went up by 10.4 percent, the first time it went above 10 percent this year. Exports also saw an expected 7.2-percent increase in August, according to the figures released by the General Administration of Customs on September 8.
The capital market immediately responded to the optimistic economic data. Since September, China's stock market has been on the rise. On September 9, when the NBS began releasing August economic figures, the Shanghai Stock Exchange Composite Index jumped 3.39 percent, an increase rarely seen over the past three years.
Wang Jun, a researcher with China Center for International Economic Exchanges, thinks the data indicate that economic growth is higher than market expectations, and all the data suggest an economic recovery.
Global investment banks, including Goldman Sachs, HSBC, Standard Chartered and JPMorgan Chase & Co., as well as international economic research institutions, have raised their forecasts of China's GDP growth in 2013.
Under present conditions, the Chinese economy will reach its target of 7.5-percent growth set at the start of the year. Unexpected circumstances aside, the Chinese economy is expected to maintain a stable growth rate of 7-8 percent over the long term.
The August data should lay to rest claims of a "hard landing" for the Chinese economy, and give the Chinese Government more room to deepen economic reforms and shift the economy away from dependence on investment and exports and toward consumption. "China's economy has entered the phase of quality and efficient growth. This second phase of growth will be a more exciting story," said Chinese Premier Li Keqiang at the opening ceremony of 11th Summer Davos forum held in Dalian, Liaoning Province, on September 11.
The Third Plenary Session of the 18th Central Committee of the Communist Party of China, a meeting where major announcements regarding economic reform are expected, will be held in November. Since the meeting will set the trajectory and tone of the economy over the next five to 10 years and illustrate the new leadership's ability to govern, expectations are high among the public.