China has tools to cope with economic challenges despite slowing growth – premier

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FILE PHOTO: Chinese Premier Li Keqiang appears on a screen during a news conference held via video link, after the closing session of the National People’s Congress (NPC) in Beijing, China March 11, 2021. Businesshala / Martin Pollard
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BEIJING (Businesshala) – China has enough tools to meet economic challenges despite slow growth, and the government remains confident of achieving its full-year development goals, Premier Li Keqiang said on Thursday.

China’s key economic indicators are within a reasonable range, Li said at the opening ceremony of the Canton Fair in Guangzhou, although he acknowledged that growth slowed in the third quarter, due to a combination of factors.

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“Factors challenging stable economic operations are on the rise, while there are a lot of uncertainties and volatility in the external environment,” Lee said.

Li said that middle and downstream industries and businesses are facing a sustained increase in operating costs, impacted by higher commodity prices and higher shipping costs.

He said the lack of energy also adds to the economic headache, and the sporadic COVID-19 outbreak is also a blow to the rebound in consumption and services.

“But we are taking a number of measures to tackle and overcome those challenges and difficulties, and we have relatively enough tools in our reserve toolbox to deal with the challenges.”

Li said the government would ensure that inflation would not pick up and ensure electricity supply this winter and next spring.

China’s economic growth is expected to slow to 5.2% year-on-year in the third quarter from 7.9% in April-June, as power shortages and supply bottlenecks hurt factories, while sporadic COVID-19 outbreaks weigh on consumption , as shown in a recent Businesshala poll.

Reporting by Xu Jing, Stella Qiu and Ryan Wu; Editing by Peter Graff

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