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Growth expected to slow down in 2005(20/10/04)

    China's gross domestic product (GDP) is expected to grow by more than 8 percent in 2005 compared with an estimated 9 percent this year, according to a survey released by the National Bureau of Statistics of China here Tuesday.

    The survey says that most of the 50 leading Chinese economic experts interviewed predicted the economy may slow down in 2005 as a result of the government's macro-control measures implemented since last year.

    According to the survey, 81 percent of the experts considered that the GDP growth may surpass 8 percent, about half of them put it at 8.5 percent to 9 percent, and about nearly 25 percent gave aforecast of higher than 9 percent. The average growth rate stands at 8.4 percent.

    About 70 percent of the experts predicted that the GDP would grow by 9 percent this year.

    The experts predicted that the growth rate of capital asset investment would reach 27 percent this year, a little lower than the first half year and a drop of 15 percentage points from the first quarter. They put next years' growth rate at 24 percent.

    The survey shows that about 45 percent of the experts were optimistic about the increase in consumer demand next year, while 50 percent of them said consumer demand would remain the same.

    Real estate would remain as an important drive for increased consumption in 2005, according to the survey. As to the price of real estate, 50 percent of the experts considered it would rise next year, 29 percent of them believed prices would remain the same as this year, and the remaining predicted a fall.

    The experts also pointed out some prominent problems such as the supply of coal, electric power and oil, the shortage of capital in some enterprises and deep-rooted structural problems.


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