China’s economy grew at forecast-beating 6.9 percent in 2017, picking up steam for the first time since 2010, official data showed Thursday.
The world’s number two economy eclipsed the official target of about 6.5 percent and picked up pace from the 6.7 percent growth seen in 2016.
“The national economy has maintained the momentum of stable and sound development and exceeded the expectation with the economic vitality, impetus and potential released,” National Statistics Bureau head Ning Jizhe said in a report.
“We should also be aware that there are still difficulties and challenges confronting the economy and the improvement of quality and efficiency remains a daunting task,” Ning said.
The GDP reading follows strong trade data last week, which showed the humming global economy had propelled China’s export machine.
“This momentum, especially the part fuelled by external demand, may carry on well into 2018,” said Wei Yao, chief China economist at Societe Generale.
The latest figures show the services industry grew eight percent for the year with retail sales spiking 10.2 percent, good news for the transition.
China’s trade surplus with the US swelled 10 percent to $275.8 billion last year, a record high.
A spokesperson of the Chinese embassy in Islamabad said, under the strong leadership of the CPC Central Committee with Comrade Xi Jinping as the core, all regions and departments implemented the decisions and arrangements made by the CPC Central Committee and the State Council, adhered to the general working guideline of making progress while maintaining stability. They adopted new development philosophy, focused on the supply-side structural reform and pushed forward structural optimization, shifting of driving forces and quality improvement. As a result, the national economy maintained the momentum of stable and sound development.
According to the preliminary estimates, the gross domestic product (GDP) of China was 82,712.2 billion yuan in 2017, an increase of 6.9 percent at constant price compared with last year.