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Local govt debt risk ‘controllable’

Updated: Mar 6,2015 2:16 PM     Xinhua

BEIJING — The risk of China’s local government debt is generally controllable, Finance Minister Lou Jiwei said on March 6.

Lou made the remarks at a press conference on the sidelines of the annual session of the National People’s Congress, the top legislature.

“China’s local government debt problem is a fact,” Lou said, “the government is guarding against regional financial risks.”

“On the whole,” he said, “the risk of China’s local government debt is controllable.”

The local government debt piled up in past years should be resolved step by step, he said.

A slowing Chinese property sector has fueled worries that it may undercut local governments’ fiscal revenue and blow up risks over local government debt.

“We have paid close attention to those localities that have a large amount of government debt,” said Lou, adding that his ministry is examining and verifying the latest figures of local government debt nationwide.