politics

Investment, export drive China’s economic recovery: UN economist

Photo taken on May 9, 2021 shows a domestically produced coffee robot on display during the first China International Consumer Products Expo in Haikou, capital of south China's Hainan Province. (Xinhua/Guo Cheng)

  Photo taken on May 9, 2021 shows a domestically produced coffee robot on display during the first China International Consumer Products Expo in Haikou, capital of south China's Hainan Province. (Xinhua/Guo Cheng)

UNITED NATIONS, May 11 (Xinhua) — Growth in investment and exports as well as some other domestic factors are driving China’s economic recovery, said a UN economist on Tuesday.

In a mid-year update of its World Economic Situation and Prospects 2021, the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA) revised its growth forecast for China from 7.2 percent to 8.2 percent.

Hamid Rashid, the lead author of the mid-year update, attributed the upward revision to the robust investment in China in the last six months and the significant increase in merchant exports, such as electronics and electrical equipment, digital equipment and others.

The manufacturing support from China has been very robust and has exceeded the pre-crisis level. That is also driving the growth outlook for China, he explained.

Investments in infrastructure and other domestic sectors are also playing a very important role and China’s domestic consumption is expected to pick up a little bit more, he said. “And that would also explain why we have moved from 7.2 percent to 8.2 percent for China.”

DESA now predicts the world economy will grow 5.4 percent in 2021 instead of the 4.7 percent it forecast in its World Economic Situation and Prospects 2021, which was released in January 2021, largely due to strong rebounds in the world’s two largest economies — China and the United States.

DESA revised its forecast for the United States from 3.4 percent to 6.2 percent for 2021.

Rashid, who is chief of the Global Economic Monitoring Branch of DESA’s Economic Analysis and Policy Division, said the upward revision for global growth is largely because of a significant change in the outlook for the pandemic, especially the rollout of vaccines in the United States, Europe and China.

But he stressed that DESA remains far more cautious than other international organizations in its forecasting.

“So we are cautiously optimistic about the global economy. But we would not say this is exactly what’s going to be materialized, because there are a lot of uncertainties that we underscored in our report, and especially at the speed of vaccination and coverage that needs to happen in the next six months to achieve that kind of growth rate that we project here: 5.4 percent growth,” Rashid said.

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