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China govt struggling to meet fiscal target: FinMin

(Xinhua) Updated: 2015-06-28 17:57

BEIJING - The Chinese government is struggling to meet its fiscal targets this year, finance minister Lou Jiwei warned on Sunday, citing slowing fiscal revenue growth.

The central treasury received 2.95 trillion yuan (about 475 billion US dollars) from January to May, a year-on-year increase of two percent, Lou said when briefing lawmakers on a State Council report on the final accounts for 2014.

The increase is far below the previously budgeted growth rate of five percent.

Total national fiscal revenue reached 6.43 trillion yuan in the same period of time, up 3.1 percent year on year.

Lou attributed the "receding" fiscal revenue to a unfavorable macro economic status quo - the widely touted "new normal".

The economy grew 7.4 percent in 2014, the weakest annual expansion in 24 years. This year's growth target is set at approximately 7 percent.

The government has resorted to reform in hope of stronger growth, and structural optimization, said Lou.

"With the new growth engines still in the making, external demand contracting with internal contradictions aggregating, there has been considerable downward pressure on the economy," he said.

That, among other factors, have left the central government under "considerable pressure to meet its fiscal revenue target ... for the rest of the year," Lou said.

The finance minister, meanwhile, said the government has undertaken a series to measures to steady growth and to restructure its economy. Some of these measures "have already worked, or are currently working," Lou said.

The government will stick to the strategic development blueprint of the "Four Comprehensives" and focus on achieving the dual objectives of "maintaining medium-high growth and moving toward medium-high development," he said.

The State Council report was submitted to the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress (NPC) at its ongoing bi-monthly session, presided over by Zhang Dejiang, chairman of the NPC Standing Committee.

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