China’s GDP growth slows to 6 pct in third quarter

President Xi Jinping at the celebration of the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People's Republic of China at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing on September 30, 2019. (AFP)

China’s economy grew at the slowest rate in 27 years in the third quarter, official figures showed on Friday, as the country grapples with a protracted trade war with the US and slowing domestic demand.

Gross domestic product (GDP) figures showed that the Chinese economy expanded 6.0 percent in July-September, compared with 6.2 percent in the second quarter.

The figure is the same as predicted by an AFP poll of economists earlier this week.

It marks the worst quarterly figure since 1992, although still within Beijing’s target range of 6.0-6.5 percent for the whole year.

Unveiling the data, Mao Shengyong, spokesman for the National Bureau of Statistics, said the country was “faced with mounting risks and challenges both at home and abroad.”

However, he said the “national economy maintained overall stability... and improved living standard.”

China has been embroiled in a long-running trade war with the United States amid cooling domestic demand and a swine fever outbreak in the country’s pig herd that has sent meat prices soaring.

To give its economy a shot in the arm, Beijing has pushed forward a raft of stimulus measures this year, including higher tax reimbursement rates for exporters dealing with US tariffs, boosting bank lending and increased spending on major infrastructure projects including roads and railways.

The economy grew at 6.6 percent in 2018.

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Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 09:53 - GMT 06:53
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