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Fitch ups China's growth rate to 8.4% from 8%

By Chen Jia | | Updated: 2021-03-18 14:00
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A view of Beijing on Oct 28, 2020. [Photo/IC]

The global rating firm Fitch Ratings revised up the projection of China's GDP growth rate to 8.4 percent from 8 percent on Thursday, because of the strong export recovery and global demand, it said.

China's economic rebound to 6.5 percent in the fourth quarter of 2020 was described as "a remarkable achievement in the context of the pandemic" by Fitch, adding that it reflected the nation's success in containing the virus, strong investment growth and a boost to net trade as exports rebounded very rapidly from mid-year and services imports collapsed.

Fitch in its report also updated its forecast on the global GDP growth, up to 6.1 percent from 5.3 percent in its December's projection, as fiscal support is stepped up sharply, economies adapt to social distancing and vaccination rollout gathers momentum. The world GDP fell by 3.4 percent in 2020 as a whole.

"The pandemic is not over, but it is starting to look like we have entered the final phase of the economic crisis," said Brian Coulton, chief economist of Fitch Ratings.

The main driver of the global forecast revision is the much larger-than-expected fiscal stimulus package recently passed in the US. The $1.9 trillion price tag represents more than 2.5 percent of global GDP, according to the economist.

The firm expected that the rate of headline inflation in the US could rise above 3 percent year-on-year in April. The US Federal Reserve is focused on unemployment, more tolerant of higher inflation and will remain patient. Core inflation will stay well below target in the eurozone and the European Central Bank will continue to purchase assets through 2022, according to the report.

While China is the only major economy that is starting to normalize macroeconomic policy settings, where the fiscal deficit is being scaled back and credit growth is slowing as the economic recovery matures, Coulton added.

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