China’s growth slows down to 10.6 percent

April 16th, 2008 - 5:10 pm ICT by admin  

Beijing, April 16 (Xinhua) China’s growth rate slowed down marginally to 10.6 percent in the first quarter, compared to 11.7 percent in the same period last year, the government said Wednesday. China maintained steady and fast growth since the beginning of the year, despite an unprecedented freak winter and the widespread subprime mortgage crisis, National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) spokesman Li Xiaochao said.

The world’s fourth largest economy expanded at a rate of 11.9 percent for all of 2007, the fifth consecutive year its annual economic growth exceeded 10 percent.

Industrial production rose 16.4 percent year-on-year in the first three months. The increase was 1.9 percentage points lower than that in the same period of 2007.

Fixed asset investment reached 2.18 trillion yuan ($311 billion), up 24.6 percent, which was 0.9 percentage points higher than a year ago.

The country’s first-quarter fixed asset investment surged 24.6 percent to 2.18 trillion yuan ($311 billion) from a year earlier, Li said, adding that the growth was 0.9 percentage points higher than a year ago.

China’s consumer price index (CPI), a measure of inflation, was up 8.3 percent in March this year, as against the 8.7 percent level for the previous month.

In the January-March period, the inflation indicator rose 7.8 percent for urban areas, and up 8.7 percent for rural areas.

Food prices soared 21.0 percent, driving CPI up by 6.8 percentage points. Housing prices and rents went up 6.6 percent on an average. In 70 major cities housing prices rose 11.0 percent on an average, 5.4 percentage points higher than the previous year.

The first quarter also saw retail prices up 7.4 percent, 5.3 percentage points higher than the previous year’s level, and producer price index, or PPI was up 6.9 percent, 4.0 percentage points higher.

Prices of raw materials, fuels and power supply increased 9.8 percent in the first three months of this year, 5.7 percentage points higher than the level for the same period of last year, according to the NBS analysis.

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