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China central bank chief says economy on the mend

China central bank chief says economy on the mend

The head of China's central bank said Monday the country's economy was on the mend and expressed confidence that a government target of 8 percent growth this year would be met.
Zhou Xiaochuan, governor of the People's Bank of China, said signs the downturn in the world's third-largest economy was leveling off began to emerge in March.
"We can see that in recent times it is stabilizing and is actually taking a turn for the better," Zhou told reporters in Hong Kong.
"Supposing that the international financial crisis will not take a turn for the worse ... in the third and fourth quarters the situation will continue to improve and probably we can achieve the previously set" target for growth, he said.
Beijing has sought to insulate China from the global recession with a 4 trillion yuan ($586 billion) stimulus plan that calls for higher spending on construction of highways and other public works.
China's economic growth slowed to 6.1 percent in the first quarter, the weakest since quarterly records began in 1992.
Zhou was in Hong Kong Monday to sign off on a pilot program allowing the use of China's currency, the yuan, for trade between the territory and mainland China. It's among recent moves by China to internationalize its currency and shift away from the dominant dollar.
China's fortunes are deeply intertwined with the greenback. Beijing is the world's largest holder of U.S. debt, which it purchases with its vast foreign currency reserves.
Over the weekend Zhou said there will be no sudden changes in its policy on foreign exchange reserves.
Beijing announced last year that Hong Kong would be allowed to use the yuan to trade with the mainland. Hong Kong is a Chinese territory but has its own currency and customs system. Beijing also has cleared the yuan's use in foreign trade for companies in Shanghai and four southern cities near Hong Kong.


Updated : 2021-05-14 06:56 GMT+08:00