ECONOMIC PROSPERITY: Economies in China's western regions have picked up momentum. Urumqi, capital of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, is enjoying benefits from rapid growth (CFPP)
China's economic growth has slowed, economic statistics released on July 15 show, confirming market expectations. But officials said the country's economy is still on track.
The recovery has gained traction in China, which registered a double-digit growth of 11.1 percent in the first half of this year.
"We will continue to implement the stimulus packages introduced after the financial crisis, adjust the economic structure and transform the growth pattern, while the economy is on track to recovery," Sheng Laiyun, spokesman for the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), said at the July 15 press conference sponsored by the State Council Information Office.
While maintaining a comparatively high growth rate, the Chinese economy has improved in growth quality in a coordinated way and reflected more flexibility in economic policies, Sheng said.
"GDP grew 11.1 percent, up 3.7 percentage points year on year, and the country has reaped its third best summer grain harvest, despite the fact that drought has caused grain losses of 400 million kg," he added.
Sheng said both domestic and overseas demand provided greater growth momentum for the Chinese economy in the first six months of 2010, measured by investment, consumption and imports and exports. China's fixed asset investment growth in the first half slowed a bit to 25 percent, compared with 33.5 percent in the same period last year. Retail sales of consumer goods maintained a high growth rate at 18.2 percent. Total volume of exports and imports recovered quickly in the first half, up 43.1 percent year-on-year, with imports posting a growth of 52.7 percent, said NBS statistics.
"Import increases are evidence of strong domestic demand, and economic growth represents a great contribution made by China to the global economic recovery," he said.
In addition, the consumer price index, a barometer of inflation, rose 2.6 percent year-on-year, reflecting moderate and steady price increases of consumer goods, effectively easing both deflation and inflation sentiments.
Employment also posted remarkable increases. While more than 5 million urban residents found jobs in the first half, about 6.32 million farmers joined the migrant workforce.