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China’s economy to bottom out in 2015: economist

Updated: Mar 9,2015 10:02 PM     Xinhua

BEIJING — China will likely emerge the economic downturn in 2015 as the world’s second largest economy is regaining some strength to fend off downward risk, a Chinese economist said on March 9.

There is hope that the economy will level out in this year with growth stabilizing at slightly above 7 percent, said Zhang Liqun, a researcher at the State Council’s development research center.

China will succeed in “changing gear” to medium-high growth, he said.

The government lowered its GDP growth target to 7 percent for 2015 during the ongoing “two sessions”, below the 7.5-percent goal that was narrowly missed last year.

The economy expanded 7.4 percent in 2014, the lowest rate for 24 years, as exports became weak and domestic demand remained sluggish.

Given the condition of major industries, the economy will not continue its losing streak and policy makers will be able to emphasize reform and restructuring, Zhang said.

He forecast better domestic consumption, foreign trade and investment will help end the downturn this year, particularly recovery in property and infrastructure investment.