China expects mild, controllable price increase this year: official

10:35, March 14, 2010      

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Consumer price increase in China is expected to be "mild and controllable" this year, Fang Aiqing, assistant commerce minister, said Saturday.

"The country's inflation target this year has been set in accordance with the real situation and is expectedly achievable," Fang said at a press conference on the sidelines of the country's parliament annual session.

China targets a rise of consumer price of around 3 percent this year, Premier Wen Jiabao said when delivering a government work report at the opening of the annual session of the National People's Congress last week.

Fang said factors such as increasing world's commodity prices, higher costs of raw materials, labors and environmental protection are all likely to boost domestic prices.

However, as the government enhances and improves macro regulations and market supplies exceeds demand, prices are likely to stabilize, he said.

The country's consumer price index (CPI), a main gauge of inflation, rose 2.7 percent year on year in February, compared with a decline of 1.6 percent a year earlier.

Climbing food prices, the Spring Festival holiday and a lower comparison base last year all contributed to the Feb. CPI increase, he said.

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