Chongqing Municipality, one of the fastest-growing regions in China, has set its economic growth target for 2018 at 8.5 percent, according to a government work report at the municipal people's congress Friday.
This follows the 9.3-percent growth rate the city registered last year, which put an end to its double-digit growth over the past 15 years.
Despite the slowdown, Chongqing still outpaced the 6.9 percent national GDP growth in 2017.
The main goal for Chongqing in the next five years will be shifting from high growth to quality growth, according to Tang Liangzhi, the city's acting mayor.
Tang said Chongqing is still uneven in development and needs to accelerate the pace of industrial restructuring and make innovation a driving force for growth.
According to the work report, by 2022, Chongqing's private economy is expected to account for 55 percent of the total, and foreign trade volume will hit 600 billion yuan (94 billion U.S. dollars).
As a traditional manufacturing base, Chongqing will promote the integration of the real economy with the Internet, big data and artificial intelligence to develop smart industry. It will also upgrade traditional manufacturing, expand the application of big data and cloud computing to more areas, and build up an emerging industry cluster consisting of new energy vehicles, high-end equipment, new materials and medicine.
The city has selected 12 emerging industries as key development areas and pledged to raise the total output value of these industries to 750 billion yuan by 2020 and to over 1 trillion yuan in another two years, according to Ju Yan, deputy head of the Chongqing Economic and Information Technology Commission.