He Lifeng (front center), chairman of the National Development and Reform Commission, and Zhang Yong (far right) and Ning Jizhe (left), both vice-chairmen of the NDRC, take questions from reporters after a news conference at the press center of the CPC 19th National Congress on Oct. 21, 2017. (FENG YONGBIN/CHINA DAILY)
China's GDP is expected to exceed 80 trillion yuan (.08 trillion) this year, with a growth rate possibly higher than the annual target of around 6.5 percent, the chairman of the National Development and Reform Commission said on Saturday.
It means the annual growth from last year will reach more than 6 trillion yuan, an increment as large as a medium-sized developed country's GDP, and would also be higher than any annual added amount in the past five years, NDRC Chairman He Lifeng said at a news conference at the 19th CPC National Congress. [Special coverage]
China has contributed more than one-third of global economic growth on average each year since 2012, making it the world's largest contributor, he said.
GDP expected to top 80 trillion yuan this year, NDRC chief says
In the first three quarters, China achieved year-on-year GDP growth of 6.9 percent, with stable inflation as measured by 1.5 percent year-on-year growth in the consumer price index, according to the National Bureau of Statistics.
In terms of supply-side reform, which aims to rebalance the economy toward a high-quality growth pattern, the country has reduced overcapacity of steel and iron production by 110 million metric tons, along with cutting 400 million tons of coal, and shifting more resources into high-tech and innovation-driven industries, the NDRC chairman said.
On the other hand, new technology, industries and business models are increasing their contribution to stabilize economic growth momentum. Emerging industries of strategic importance achieved total operational revenue of 19.1 trillion yuan last year, up by 75 percent from 2012, NDRC data show.
The country's big data industry increased by 43.7 percent last year, and it is expected to continually expand at a rate higher than 50 percent in the next three years, according to the NDRC.
Louis Kuijs, head of Asia economics for Oxford Economics, said, "We think in the coming years these quality and equality aspects will drive economic policy reform by further improving access to health, education and pension provision, and improve China's environment and ecology."
Regional strategies and plans, including coordinated development of the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region and plans for the Yangtze River Economic Zone, will further consolidate China's overall economic growth, experts said.
The central government is putting the finishing touches on the construction plan for the Xiongan New Area in Hebei province, while a framework for the area's administration policies is heading for final discussion and approval, the NDRC chairman said.
He said more than 300 experts have participated in drafting the plan, and added that the area will be constructed to high standards, as Xi Jinping, general secretary of the CPC Central Committee, pointed out on Wednesday in his report to the 19th CPC National Congress.