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China’s economy grows 9% in 2008

  China’s gross domestic product (GDP) reached CNY 30.0670 trillion (yuan) ($4.4216 trillion) in 2008, up 9% year on year, said the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) Thursday.

The growth was the slowest since 2001, when an annual rate of 8.3% was recorded, and the first time below a double-digit level since 2003. The overall national economy maintained the good developing momentum of fast growth, stable prices, optimized structures and improved welfare, said Ma Jiantang, director of the NBS, at a press conference.

The annual growth rate for the Q4 dipped to 6.8% from 9.0% in the Q3 and 9.9% for the first three quarters, according to Ma. “The international financial crisis is deepening and spreading, while its negative impact on domestic economy is continuing,” said Ma. Despite the fourth-quarter slowdown, Ma said the 9% pace was “still a high figure”.

China’s performance was better than the average growth of 3.7% for the world economy last year, 1.4% for developed countries and 6.6% for developing and emerging economies, he said, citing estimates of the International Monetary Fund. “With a 9%-rate, China actually contributed to more than 20% of the global economic growth in 2008,” said Ma. (Xinhua)