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15.07.2013 09:47

China GDP growth slows further in Q2

China's economic growth slowed in the second quarter amid weaker industrial production and investment growth, the latest figures from the National Bureau of Statistics revealed Monday.

The gross domestic product rose 7.5 percent year-on-year in the second quarter, in line with expectations. This was slower than the 7.7 percent growth recorded in the first three months. In the first half of the year, GDP rose 7.6 percent compared with the same period last year.

A separate report from the statistical office showed that industrial production grew 8.9 percent annually in June. This was weaker than May's 9.2 percent growth and the 9.1 percent expansion forecast.

Fixed asset investment rose 20.1 percent in the January-June period, slower than the 20.4 percent gain between January and May, the statistical office said in another report. This was also below expectation of a 20.2 percent increase.

The data adds to evidence that economy is facing downward pressure from sluggish external demand and economic restructuring. Going forward, the ongoing squeeze on credit growth is also likely weigh on growth.

The authorities have recently indicated that they are ready to tolerate slower economic growth and go ahead with more economic reforms to achieve sustainable and balanced growth in the long-term.

Nevertheless, a separate data showed that retail sales growth was better than expected. Sales increased 13.3 percent year-on-year in June, faster than the 12.9 percent rise forecast. In May, sales were up 12.9 percent.

China's economy is going through a rebalancing exercise, moving away from exports and investment to make growth more consumption-driven.

The Customs Department data released last week showed that exports declined 3.1 percent year-on-year in June and imports slipped 0.7 percent.

Earlier this month, the International Monetary Fund lowered its growth forecast for the Chinese economy to 7.8 percent this year from the 8 percent predicted in April. For 2014, the growth is seen at 7.7 percent, much slower than the previous projection of 8.2 percent.

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