Asian Development Bank optimistic on health of Chinese economy

Updated 2017-03-25 10:01:12 Xinhua

The Chinese economy is healthy and its structural reform is heading in the right direction, said Asian Development Bank (ADB) Vice President Stephen Groff on Friday at an Asian economic cooperation forum.

The 6.5-percent growth rate forecast for 2017 by the Chinese government fell in line with estimation of the ADB, said Groff at the on-going Boao Forum for Asia.

This is a deceleration from the 6.7 percent recorded for last year. However, the ADB is not concerned as it believes this is reflective of the structural reform in the country, he said.

He believed the gradual decelerating growth is natural for any economy as it evolves from the investment-driven type to a risk-managing one.

“We're not at all concerned about this deceleration, and we think it's healthy and the structural transformation that the country continues to go through is the right direction,” he said.

On development across Asia, Groff said the need for infrastructure investment for the Asia-Pacific up until 2030 amounts to 26 trillion U.S. dollars, which breaks down to 1.7 trillion dollars a year, while the current investment across the region are 880 billion U.S. dollars a year.

Calling for more investment for the infrastructure development across Asia, Groff said he has taken note of the “incredible progress” in the development of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB).

“It's now a fully operating institution in just a couple of years,” said Groff, adding that the AIIB currently has investments in a number of different countries and it is working hard to develop cooperative relations with many Asian countries and other similar institutions.

“I think the progress has been terrific,” Groff said.

He said he looks forward to working with the AIIB in the future.

The Boao Forum for Asia opened on Thursday at the seaside resort of Boao, Hainan, a province in southern China. The four-day annual event is focused on free trade and efforts to combat deglobalization.

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