China needs an annual growth of 6.3 per cent in 2018-2020 to achieve its target of doubling the 2010 gross domestic product (GDP) by 2020, Yang Weimin, deputy head of the country’s office of the central leading group on financial and economic affairs, said at an economics forum recently. Yang does not foresee any huge barrier in meeting that goal.
China decided to double the 2010 GDP and per-capita income by 2020 five years ago to turn a moderately prosperous society. GDP expanded 6.9% year on year in the first three quarters of 2017, above the government’s target of around 6.5% for the whole year, according to a Chinese government-controlled newspaper.
In a report delivered at the 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China, no more GDP-doubling target was mentioned, showing China’s emphasis on development quality rather than fast expansion. The focus will be on high-quality development, instead of rapid growth, as the potential growth rate has changed due to upgraded consumption, financial risk and environmental constraints, Yang said at the forum.
Ignoring these realities, if China continues to be obsessed with fast growth rates, the concomitant risks will outweigh the increase in GDP, he added.