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English>>China Business

Economic figures for the third quarter indicate a further slowdown

By Zhou Xiaoyan (Beijing Review)

08:16, October 22, 2012

The GDP grew 7.7 percent in the first three quarters. (China Daily)

China's economy grew 7.4 percent year on year in the third quarter of 2012, slower than the 7.6 percent growth in the second quarter and the 8.1 percent in the first, the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) announced on October 18.

Growth has slowed for the seventh straight quarter, although it was in line with what economists had predicted for the world's second-largest economy.

The country's GDP reached 35.35 trillion yuan ($5.61 trillion) in the first three quarters of 2012, said NBS spokesman Sheng Laiyun in a press conference on October 18.

"The GDP grew 7.7 percent in the first three quarters, and the economy is generally stable," Sheng said. During the first half of the year, it grew 7.8 percent.

Despite the slide, Sheng said the economy had been stabilizing, especially since September. "We have seen some improvements in the third quarter," he said.

Total retail sales in September hit 1.82 trillion yuan ($291 billion), up 14.2 percent year on year and 1.46 percent month on month.

Fixed-asset investment rose 20.5 percent year on year to 25.69 trillion yuan ($4.11 billion) in the first nine months, with the growth rate accelerating slightly by 0.1 percentage points from the first half.

Challenged by a sluggish external market and global economic woes, the Chinese Government lowered its full-year growth target for 2012 to 7.5 percent in early March, after its economy grew 9.2 percent in 2011.

The pro-growth policies that China has already rolled out are creating new investment demand that will start showing their full impact in the coming months, said Xu Hongcai, a senior economist with the China Center for International Economic Exchanges, a government think tank based in Beijing.

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