China’s economic growth target for 2023 has been set at around 5 percent, according to a government work report submitted to the national legislature for deliberation on Sunday. Why around 5 percent? Is the new target a sign of caution or careful consideration? How will the Chinese economy fare this year? Read on for the answers to these questions and more.
PRIORITIZING HIGH QUALITY
First up, the annual growth target for this year sends an unmistakable signal: China is not interested in either stimulus packages or inefficient investment to achieve rapid, unsustainable short-term high growth.
The growth target, therefore, not only encourages high-quality development but is also in line with current economic momentum and will guide all sectors as they focus on improving the quality and efficiency of development, said Zhao Chenxin, deputy head of the National Development and Reform Commission.
High-quality development is the primary task driving China’s modernization endeavors. While giving weight to economic growth, the days of growth at all costs are gone. Instead, the government wants a greener and more efficient economy.
RISKS AND RESILIENCE
In 2022, China’s economy expanded by 3 percent, higher than many other major economies, including the 2.1 percent posted by the United States.
Such achievements, attributable to the fundamentals supporting China’s steady economic growth, shed light on the country’s economic resilience, potential, and vitality.
On Sunday, the government work report warned of external challenges from lingering high inflation and weakening economic and trade growth globally. It said the foundation for stable growth at home also needs to be consolidated. Despite such headwinds, China still enjoys strong tenacity and a solid material foundation for generating recovery momentum, according to Gong Liutang, a member of the 14th National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference.
EXPECTED AND ACHIEVABLE
The IMF’s World Economic Outlook report, released in February 2023, predicted that growth in China would rise to 5.2 percent in 2023, reflecting global confidence in China’s economy.
Indeed, 2023 is already off to a good start with a notable increase in economic activity. China’s economy is seeing a faster-than-expected recovery, which may be stronger than expected in the short term, said Gu Xueming, head of the Chinese Academy of International Trade and Economic Cooperation under the Ministry of Commerce.
The fundamentals of China’s long-term economic recovery remain the same. China’s economy is steadily improving, and the country is full of confidence in achieving the 2023 economic growth target. Xinhua Reporters, Beijing