Wen Jiabao, China’s premier, has given his most optimistic assessment of the Chinese economy since the start of the year, saying that it had stabilised and that the government’s target of 7.5 per cent annual growth was well within reach.
Mr Wen’s comments, published in a statement on the government’s main website on Wednesday, came a day before China releases its third-quarter GDP data. The data are widely expected to show growth slowing from the 7.6 per cent recorded in the second quarter and marking the country’s seventh straight quarterly slowdown.
Before previous data releases this year Mr Wen warned that the Chinese economy faced “downward pressure” because of the lingering impact of the global financial crisis.
But in the comments released on Wednesday he struck a more upbeat tone: “The economy in the third quarter was quite good. We can now say with confidence that the growth of the Chinese economy is basically stabilising . . . As policies are implemented and hit their mark, the Chinese economy will stabilise further.”
He added that he was sure the economy would achieve the government’s full-year target of 7.5 per cent growth.
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