by Michael Pettis
Two years ago it was hard to find analysts who expected average GDP growth over the rest of this decade to be less than 8%. The current consensus seems to have dropped to between 6% and 7% on average.
I don’t think Beijing disagrees. After assuring us Tuesday that China’s economy – which is growing a little slower than the 7.5% target and, is expected to slow further over the rest of the year – was nonetheless “operating within a reasonable range”, in his Tianjin speech on Wednesday Premier Li suggested again that the China’s 7.5% growth target is not a hard target, and that there may be “variations” in China’s growth relative to the target.
Pettis, an expert on China’s economy, is professor of finance at Peking University’s Guanghua School of Management, where he specializes in Chinese financial markets.
Nonresident Senior Associate
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I think every one knows that variations will only come in one direction, and although his stated expectations are still pretty high, most analysts, correctly I think, interpreted his remarks as a warning that growth rates will drop even more. Here is how the People’s Daily described the speech:
Premier Li Keqiang on Wednesday said China can meet the major economic goals this year and policymakers will not be distracted by short-term fluctuations of individual indicators. Li downplayed the importance of some economic data from the past two months when delivering his keynote speech to the 2014 Summer Davos, which opened Wednesday in north China’s port city of Tianjin.
…China has targets of GDP growth around 7.5 percent and a consumer price index (CPI) increase of about 3.5 percent in 2014, with 10 million more urban jobs to keep the urban unemployment rate at a maximum of 4.6 percent.
Read more at: http://carnegieendowment.org/2014/12/02/how-might-china-slowdown-affect-world/hvso