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Green growth is the key (2)

(China Daily)

17:46, September 29, 2011

Yet, as economic growth in the US and Europe has recently stuttered, dampening prospects for global growth, the world has more than ever looked to China to help it avoid a new global recession.

Domestically, it is also natural that local governments should put fast growth at the top of their development agenda.

No national statistics are available now on the latest progress of energy conservation and emissions reduction. But the 6.17 percent rise in NOx emissions in the first half of this year revealed by the minister for environmental protection does not bode well for the broader picture.

If the emission of such a key industrial pollutant can reverse a long-term trend to actually increase, it is likely that similar efforts to reduce carbon emissions may have also suffered a setback.

And that is why the central authorities must now urge local governments to step up efforts in energy conservation and emissions reduction.

Fast growth may be needed to cushion local economies against the many difficulties and uncertainties that the global slowdown has brought about. But the lesson that China should learn from the current global crisis is that it can no longer pursue investment-and-export-led growth at any cost.

To assume its role as a vital source of global growth, China must attach more importance not to the speed but to the sustainability of its economic growth.


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