China is growing “too slowly”: top state economist

BEIJING — China’s economy has been growing too slowly this year and is not within a reasonable range, said Mr. Yang Wemin, a member of the country’s top political advisory body, at the 13th Caixin Summit, stressing the importance of striking a balance between development and find regulation. and economic expansion and non-economic goals.

“The biggest risk in economic development these days is that the growth rate is too slow,” Mr. Yang said in a video speech to a panel audience in Beijing on Friday.

High-quality development should balance quality and quantity, said Mr. Yang, deputy director of the economic committee of the National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC).

During the high-quality growth phase, China should keep its economic expansion pace within “reasonable limits” or there will be “significant impact” on the internal workings and future development of the economy, he said, adding that growth remains too slow persists must be reversed in good time.

China’s top policymakers have repeatedly promised to allow the economy to grow at a reasonable rate. However, the country’s GDP grew just 3 percent year-on-year in the first three quarters of 2022, well below its annual target of around 5.5 percent, as waves of coronavirus outbreaks and strict containment measures in line with Beijing’s “zero Covid policies have hit business, production and market expectations.

A years-long industry-wide real estate slump caused by tight regulation is also weighing on economic growth.

It is difficult for China’s full-year growth to reach even 5 percent, said Liu Shijin, also deputy director of the CPPCC Economic Committee, during the same Caixin Summit. Mr. Liu’s comments echoed many economists who have said China is likely to miss its annual growth target.

To eradicate infections in communities, in line with the “zero Covid” policy, local governments often apply strict control measures, such as:

From January to September, the three provincial-level regions in mainland China whose economies have shrunk year after year — Hainan, Shanghai and Jilin — all experienced large-scale lockdowns sometime this year.

Pushing China’s economic growth back into a reasonable range requires dynamic balance between various goals, Mr. Yang said. The economic growth rate cannot be the only indicator that matters, nor can China put any other indicator above everything else and sacrifice economic development, he said.

According to Mr. Yang, a balance must also be maintained between development and regulation. Regulation should aim for healthier and rule-based development of the regulated, and policymakers should stick to long-term goals rather than trying to solve problems overnight, Mr Yang said.

Authorities cannot be accused of issuing policies based on the perspectives of their own departments or localities, but they should also consider the broader implications of the policies they put in place, he said.

Chinese authorities have tightened regulations for sectors like big tech and after-school tutoring, broadly phasing out the latter over the past year. These crackdowns contributed to China’s economic slowdown and high youth unemployment as companies shrank stores, laid off employees and slowed hiring.

To motivate the private sector, there should be some policy certainty, with improved policies to reverse business expectations, Mr Yang said. CAIXIN WORLDWIDE

About Thelma Wilt

Check Also

Canada’s More Immigrant Plan aims to increase the workforce, but experts say they will need support

A plan to welcome a record number of immigrants to Canada involves hiring needed workers, …