China’s economy grows

By Bill Smith

Beijing (dpa) – China’s economic growth slowed to 10.3 per cent in
the second quarter of this year, suggesting that policies designed to
rebalance the economy and prevent overheating were working, the
government said Thursday.

The year-on-year growth in gross domestic product (GDP) was down
from the first quarter’s 11.9-per-cent rise, said Sheng Laiyun, a
spokesman for the National Bureau of Statistics.

Sheng said the marginal slowdown would help China’s efforts to
rebalance the economy, which includes reducing reliance on exports
and infrastructure investment, as well as promoting domestic
consumption and more energy-efficient sustainable development.

Estimated GDP totalled 17.28 trillion yuan (2.55 trillion dollars)
in the first six months of this year, up 11.1 per cent from the same
period a year earlier, he said.

“China’s economy generally performed well in the first half and
has developed according to the government’s macro-regulation,” Sheng

But he warned China had still not fully recovered from the effects
of the global recession.

“The domestic and international environment for national economic
development is still fairly complicated, and there are still a lot of
difficulties and problems in the course of economic recovery,” he

China reported estimated economic growth of 9.1 per cent last year.

The World Bank also said China’s economy “continued to grow
robustly” in the first half of this year but had shown signs of “some
softening” that could slow growth slightly in 2011.

The bank forecast GDP growth of 9.5 per cent for this year and 8.5
per cent for 2011 while the Chinese government uses a broad target of
8 per cent for annual GDP growth.

Analysts said they expected China to overtake Japan this year as
the world’s second-largest economy after the United States.