Tue, Jan 03, 2006 - Page 11 News List

Chinese economy grew 9.8% in 2005

AFP , SHANGHAI

China's economy grew 9.8 percent last year, a Chinese official was quoted as saying yesterday, a faster-than-expected rate after a major revision upwards last month of the size of the economy.

Ou Xinqian (歐新黔), vice minister of the National Development and Reform Commission, said the final year figure would be up 0.4 percentage points from the organization's previous forecast of 9.4 percent.

"This figure was adjusted according to the newly revised 2004 GDP," Xinhua quoted Ou as saying, referring to last month's revision of China's GDP data.

That revision showed the value of China's economy at the end of 2004 was in reality 16.8 percent, or US$284 billion, more than previously estimated.

The miscalculation, mainly in the service sector, meant China hopped over Italy to become the world's sixth-largest economy with total GDP of more than US$1.97 trillion.

The revised 2005 growth figure of 9.8 percent from Ou is not the final official number, which will be released by the National Bureau of Statistics when it reports annual economic data later this month.

Ou's forecast adds to an increasingly long list of estimates provided by China's various government organs charged with economic oversight.

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