China's economic growth could slow to 7.1 per cent in 2015: report

16 December 2014

China's economic growth could slow to 7.1 per cent in 2015 as against an expected 7.4 per cent this year, restrained by a sagging property sector, Reuters reported citing the central bank research report which it had seen yesterday.

Exports could be boosted by stronger global demand, but not by enough to counteract the impact from weakening property investment, the report on the central bank's website said.

China's exports were likely grow 6.9 per cent in 2015, speeding up from this year's 6.1 per cent rise, while import growth was seen accelerating to 5.1 per cent in 2015 as against year's 1.9 per cent, it said.

The report warned that the Federal Reserve's expected move to increase interest rates sometime next year could hurt emerging-market economies.

Fixed-asset investment growth might slow to 12.8 per cent in 2015 as against this year's 15.5 per cent, even as retail sales growth quickened to 12.2 per cent from 12 percent, it said.

It added, consumer inflation might hold largely steady in 2015, at 2.2 per cent.

The country's economic growth slowed to 7.3 per cent in the third quarter, and November's soft factory and investment figures suggested full-year growth would miss Beijing's 7.5-per cent target, marking the weakest expansion in 24 years.

According to the report, merchandise exports could accelerate to 6.9-per cent year-over-year growth in 2015, up from 6.1 per cent this year, current account balance at about 2.4 per cent of gross domestic product, remaining largely unchanged from 2014.

According to the central bank, the estimates made in a working paper published on the website of the People's Bank of China, however, did not represent the official views of the bank.

In a meeting last week, China's top policy makers sought to map out economic priorities for next year. While no announcement was made of any specific economic targets, it was widely expected they would plan to cut the closely watched economic growth target for 2015.

The official target, this year called for growth of about 7.5 per cent.


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