TIANJIN — Premier Li Keqiang said on Sept 10 that the government was not distracted by the slight short-term fluctuations of individual indicators of China’s economy given its new normal state.
“We focused more on structural readjustment and other long-term problems, and refrained from being distracted by the slight short-term fluctuations of individual indicators,” Premier Li said in his keynote speech at the Annual Meeting of the New Champions 2014, which opened on Sept 10 in north China’s port city of Tianjin.
The premier’s remarks at the forum, also known as the Summer Davos, came after electricity consumption, freight volume and other indicators showed signs of slowdown in July and August.
“That was inevitable and within our expectation,” Li said, “because the domestic and international economic situation was still complex and volatile and year-on-year growth was also affected by base figures.”
China’s power consumption slowed again in July, expanding only 3 percent year on year, which was sharply lower than the 5.9-percent recorded in June, according to the National Energy Administration (NEA).
The NEA was yet to release its latest figure later this month.
The premier urged the world not to just focus on the Chinese economy’s short-term performance or the performance of a particular sector when observing the Chinese economy.
“Rather, one should look at the overall trend, the bigger picture and the total score,” he said.
China’s GDP expanded 7.4 percent from a year ago in the first half of this year, compared with an annual growth target of around 7.5 percent for the full year.
“Judging by the principle of range-based macro-control, we believe the actual economic growth rate is within the proper range, even if it is slightly higher or lower than the 7.5 percent target,” Li noted.
He reiterated that the government’s important goal of maintaining stable growth is to ensure employment, and the floor of the proper range is to ensure relatively adequate employment.
As the economic aggregate continues to expand, Li said, growth will mean more jobs and there will be greater tolerance to fluctuations.
The Chinese economy is in the new normal state and the country’s policymakers have remained levelheaded and taken steps to tackle deep-seated challenges, he said.
Li stressed China’s economy is highly resilient and has much potential and ample space to grow, with a full range of tools of macro-control at the government’s disposal.
“The measures we have taken are good both for now and for longer-term interests, and will therefore enable us to prevent major fluctuations and make a ‘hard landing’ even less possible,” he added.