News / Asia

Economists Optimistic About China’s 2013 Outlook

Women push babies in prams through a Beijing park during a public holiday, April 5, 2011.
Women push babies in prams through a Beijing park during a public holiday, April 5, 2011.
Larry Freund
Some leading economic specialists on China are optimistic about that country’s outlook for the coming year. 

Several Chinese economists, speaking at a forum at the New York Stock Exchange, were optimistic about China’s economy in 2013.  They forecast a growth rate of 8 to 8.5 percent, somewhat better than last year’s rate.

“China still has a great potential to maintain dynamic economic growth, but as a developing country and a transitional economy, China certainly faces many challenges to tap into the potential," said World Bank former chief economist Justin Yifu Lin, who is a professor at the National School of Development at Peking University. "But I am confident the leadership in China, they understand the challenges.”

Lin said the major economic challenges facing China’s leadership are the issues of income distribution and corruption.  Together, he warned, they can cause all kinds of social resentment.  He said China will carry out what he described as “marginal reform.”

“Marginal reform certainly means it may not be as rapid as you hope, but cumulatively I think China has moved a long distance from the planning economy.  China is very close to a well-functioning market economy,” Lin said.

Another forum speaker was China International Capital Corporation chief strategist Huang Haizhou, who said China is entering 2013 in a good position, with low budget growth and low inflation.

“In addition, China has a rapidly expanding consumer market, and China has a tradition of prudent management of public finances, so they have the fiscal power if needed to keep the economy growing,” he said.

Huang predicted China’s economy will remain resilient, even if faced by stress in other global economies.

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