News / Economy

    China's Economic Growth Slows

    China GDP growth, 2010 - 2013
    China GDP growth, 2010 - 2013
    VOA News
    New economic data from China show the country’s growth slowing for the second consecutive quarter much as expected.  
    Official figures from the country’s statistics bureau indicate the economy grew 7.5 percent in the April to June period, compared to the same period a year earlier.

    “China's economy has maintained a steady growth,” said Sheng Laiyuan, spokesman for China's National Bureau of Statistics, “The GDP totaled 24.8 trillion yuan ($4 trillion U.S.) in the first six months, up 7.6 percent from a year earlier. GDP grew 7.7 percent in the first quarter and 7.5 percent in the second."

    Other growth indicators - such as factory output and investment - also weakened compared to a year ago.

    Sheng Laiyuan said that the figures are all within the country's economic targets, but added that China's economic conditions are still “complex and changeable.”

    The continuing slowdown comes as Chinese leaders push through measures aimed at rebalancing the country's economy, diminishing its reliance on manufacturing for exports and government investment in core industries.

    Shaun Rein, managing director at the China Market Research Group, says that the latest data show China’s economy is still overly reliant in investments in physical assets, such as real estate and infrastructure.

    “Fixed asset investment grew 20.1 percent year over year, that is still far too high, we should be more on the 18 to 19 percent range,” he said.

    As Economy Slows, China Tries to Rebalance Industry
     
    Rein says that more of the economy needs to depend on consumer spending and the latest figures show that may be happening. Retails sales grew 13.3 percent in the first half of 2013 - an indication that consumers are starting to account for a bigger slice of GDP growth.

    “You still see continued consumer confidence, continued spending going forward,” he says, “but it's not an easy switch and there will be pains in the economy going forward as we make that shift.”

    The Chinese government has been enacting a series of policies to curb speculation in sectors like real estate, construction and banking, which traditionally accounted for much of the Asian giant’s economic growth.

    Sheng Laiyuan said that such interventions will prove essential in the long term.

    “Some measures, including the intensified property-tightening campaign, new rules to curb misuse of public funds and the exit of some previous stimulus policies, will inevitably have some impact on growth in the short term, but they will benefit our economy in the long run," he said during Monday's news conference.
    Further Signs of Slowing Ahead

    In a research note published on Monday, Nomura economists Zhiwei Zhang and Wendy Chen said that growth remains on track to achieve government's target of 7.5 percent for 2013.

    But the economists revised down their GDP growth forecast for next year, from a previously forecasted 7.5 percent to 6.9 percent.

    Zhang says that a decline in the workforce, as well as delays in structural reforms are contributing factors in the decision to lower estimate growth for 2014.

    “The working-age population dropped in 2012 - the first time in at least 20 years - and this is a really big deal, because it changed the supply of labor and make the labor market much tighter then before and push up wage growth, and hurt China comparatively particularly in the export sector,” Zhang said in a conference call on Monday.

    At the same time, Zhang says, policymakers have overlooked the development of private companies.

    “The government tried in the past five years to encourage private investment and open up monopolies in the protected sectors, but there is very little action to follow up with those guidelines,” Zhang said.

    In recent months, senior government officials have stressed the need to achieve a more balanced development, and upgrade the quality and efficiency of Chinese industries.

    Last week, China's Finance Minister Lou Jiwei said the country's economy could expand less than the government's target in 2013, and added that in the future China could tolerate growth as low as 6.5 percent.

    You May Like

    Vietnam Mulls Tough Measures for ‘Misbehaving’ Chinese Tourists

    Move comes after footage surfaced online of Chinese travelers harassing a banana hawker in Da Nang

    Pakistan Social Media Star's Honor Killing Fuels Debate

    Qandeel Baloch's murder puts spotlight on deadly tradition and other mistreatment of women

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Wall Already Runs Along Parts of US-Mexico Borderi
    X
    July 22, 2016 12:30 AM
    The Republican Party’s presidential nominee, Donald Trump, gained the support of many voters by saying he would build a wall to keep undocumented immigrants and drugs from coming across the border from Mexico. Critics have called his idea impractical and offensive to Mexico, while supporters say such a bold approach is needed to control the border. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from the border town of Nogales, Arizona.
    Video

    Video Wall Already Runs Along Parts of US-Mexico Border

    The Republican Party’s presidential nominee, Donald Trump, gained the support of many voters by saying he would build a wall to keep undocumented immigrants and drugs from coming across the border from Mexico. Critics have called his idea impractical and offensive to Mexico, while supporters say such a bold approach is needed to control the border. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from the border town of Nogales, Arizona.
    Video

    Video New HIV Tests Emphasize Rapid Results

    As the global fight against AIDS intensifies, activists have placed increasing importance on getting people to know their HIV status. Some companies are developing new HIV testing methods designed to be quick, easy and accurate. Thuso Khumalo looks at the latest methods, presented at the International AIDS conference in Durban, South Africa.
    Video

    Video African Youth with HIV Urge More Support

    HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, is the top killer of teens in sub-Saharan Africa. But many youths say their experience with the virus is unique and needs to be addressed differently than the adult epidemic. VOA South African Correspondent Anita Powell reports.
    Video

    Video Poor Residents in Cleveland Not Feeling High Hopes of Republican Convention

    With the Republican Party's National Convention underway in Cleveland, Ohio, delegates and visitors are gathered in the host city's downtown - waiting to hear from the party's presidential candidate, Donald Trump. But a few kilometers from the convention's venue, Cleveland's poorest residents are not convinced Trump or his policies will make a difference in their lives. VOA's Ramon Taylor spoke with some of these residents as well as some of the Republican delegates and filed this report.
    Video

    Video Pop-Up Art Comes to Your Living Room, Backyard and Elsewhere

    Around the world, independent artists and musicians wrestle with a common problem: where to exhibit or perform? Traditional spaces such as museums and galleries are reserved for bigger names, and renting a space is not feasible for many. Enter ArtsUp, which connects artists with venue owners. Whether it’s a living room, restaurant, office or even a boat, pop-up events are bringing music and art to unexpected places. Tina Trinh has more.
    Video

    Video With Yosemite as Backdrop, Obama Praises National Parks

    Last month, President Barack Obama and his family visited some of the most beautiful national parks in the U.S. Using the majestic backdrop of a towering waterfall in California's Yosemite National Park, Obama praised the national park system which celebrates its 100th anniversary this year. He talked about the importance of America’s “national treasures” and the need to protect them from climate change and other threats. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
    Video

    Video Counter-Islamic State Coalition Plots Next Steps

    As momentum shifts against Islamic State in Iraq, discussions are taking place about the next steps for driving the terrorist group from its final strongholds. Secretary of State John Kerry is hosting a counter-IS meeting at the State Department, a day after defense ministers from more than 30 countries reviewed and agreed upon a course of action. VOA Pentagon correspondent Carla Babb reports.
    Video

    Video Russia's Participation at Brazil Olympic Games Still In Question

    The International Olympic Committee has delayed a decision on whether to ban all Russian teams from competing in next month's Olympic Games in Brazil over allegations of an elaborate doping scheme. The World Anti-Doping Agency recently released an independent report alleging widespread doping by Russian athletes at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi. So far, only Russian track and field athletes have been barred from the Summer Games in Brazil. VOA's Zlatica Hoke has more.
    Video

    Video Scotland’s Booming Whisky Industry Fears Brexit Hangover

    After Britain’s vote to leave the European Union, Scotland’s government wants to break away from the United Kingdom – fearing the nation’s exports are at risk. Among the biggest of these is whisky. Henry Ridgwell reports on a time of turmoil for those involved in the ancient art of distilling Scotland’s most famous product.
    Video

    Video Millennials Could Determine Who Wins Race to White House

    With only four months to go until Americans elect a new president, one group of voters is getting a lot more attention these days: those ages 18 to 35, a generation known as millennials. It’s a demographic that some analysts say could have the power to decide the 2016 election. But a lot depends on whether they actually turn out to vote. VOA’s Alexa Lamanna reports.
    Video

    Video Number of Syrian Refugees Arriving in US Jumps

    The United States is committed to resettling 85,000 refugees from around the world by October. Of that number, 10,000 will come from Syria and already some 4,000 Syrian refugees have arrived in the United States, many of them settling in the state of Illinois. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports from Chicago, their arrival is not the end of a difficult journey to find peace and stability.
    Video

    Video Rio’s Trams Await Olympic Tourists

    Over the past century, many cities around the world replaced electric trams, prone to breakdowns and backups, with faster and more spacious buses. But for some reason restored antique trams are a huge tourist attraction. So it’s no wonder the authorities in Rio de Janeiro are busy restoring their city’s old tram line ahead of the Summer Olympic Games. VOA’ George Putic reports.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora

    World Currencies

    EUR
    USD
    0.9079
    JPY
    USD
    106.10
    GBP
    USD
    0.7636
    CAD
    USD
    1.3106
    INR
    USD
    67.076

    Rates may not be current.