Business / Economy

GDP grows 7.8% to top $8t

By Chen Jia in Beijing and Cecily Liu in London (China Daily) Updated: 2013-01-18 23:54

China's GDP for the first time passed $8 trillion, or about 55 percent the size of the US economy, after the world's second-largest economy struggled to speed up growth in the fourth quarter.

GDP grows 7.8% to top $8t

Based on yearly growth of 7.8 percent, the government announced on Friday that the country's 2012 GDP was 51.9 trillion yuan ($8.28 trillion).

GDP grew 7.9 percent in the final quarter, compared with 7.4 percent in the third and 7.6 percent in the second.

China's growth continued to be the highest among leading world economies, although it was its slowest in 13 years.

What was special about the year, according to Ma Jiantang, chief of the National Bureau of Statistics, was that consumption surpassed investment to become the largest contributor to the economy's growth. Its contribution to GDP was 51.8 percent, opposed to 50.4 percent from capital investment, while the contribution from net exports was minus 2.2 percent.

Rather than chasing an increasing speed of growth, the government has been focused on rebalancing the economy and improving its growth model, Ma said. Progress was achieved in the economy's structural adjustment, he said.

The Chinese economy is likely to grow steadily in 2013 and maintain an annual growth rate between 7 and 8 percent in the long term, Ma said.

Lian Ping, chief economist with the Bank of Communications, said that investment will be the main driving force for growth.

Investment is expected to increase faster and the housing market, now under government curbs, may be showing a stronger tendency to rise, he said.

Lian predicted that GDP growth may accelerate to 8.5 percent in 2013.


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GDP grows 7.8% to top $8t





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