World Insights: Observers confident of China's growth prospects as H1 growth shows resilience

Updated: July 21, 2023 Source: Xinhua News Agency
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This aerial photo taken on July 4, 2023 shows the construction site of the China Mobile Xiong'an smart city science and innovation center at an internet industrial park in the start-up area in Xiong'an New Area, north China's Hebei Province. (Xinhua/Xing Guangli)

"The Chinese economy is not only a catalyst for faster growth of the world economy, but also a catalyst for promoting cooperation, promoting trade and opposing protectionism," Philippine Star columnist Li Tianrong commented. 

BEIJING, July 20 (Xinhua) -- China's gross domestic product (GDP) grew 5.5 percent year on year in the first half (H1) of 2023, as market demand gradually recovered, production and supply continued to increase and economic performance, on the whole, picked up.

In the face of a grave and complex international environment, China's economy has shown great resilience, observers said, adding that the fundamentals for long-term development remain unchanged and high-quality development is advancing steadily. They also expressed confidence in China's development prospects.


China's economic growth is precious as it came against the backdrop of sluggish global growth this year, Wichai Kinchong Choi, senior vice president of leading Thai bank Kasikornbank, said in a recent interview with Xinhua.

Data from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) showed that China's H1 growth surpasses the 3-percent growth in 2022 and the 4.5-percent growth in the first quarter of 2023.

Sebastian Schulz, a researcher at the National University of La Plata in Argentina, said the current global economic situation is full of uncertainties, but China still maintains stable growth and shows resilience.

China's 5.5-percent growth in H1 can be attributed to an enhanced structure and optimized driving force, as consumption and service are playing an even bigger role in economic growth.

China's retail sales of consumer goods maintained a relatively fast growth of 8.2 percent year on year in January-June, with consumption contributing 77.2 percent to the economic growth, the NBS data showed.

Domestic demand has become an important driving force of China's economic growth, said Mohammed Al Ajlan, deputy chairman of Ajlan & Bros Holding Group, one of the largest private enterprises of Saudi Arabia in China.

According to the General Administration of Customs, the total export value of China's three major tech-intensive green products -- solar batteries, lithium-ion batteries and electric vehicles -- soared 61.6 percent year on year in the first half of 2023. Together they contributed 1.8 percentage points to the overall export growth during the same period.

High-quality development is the keyword of China's current economic development, said Katsuyuki Hasegawa, a professor of economics at Tokyo Woman's Christian University.


Visitors learn about the Pangu weather AI model of Huawei during the World Artificial Intelligence Conference (WAIC) 2023 in Shanghai, east China, July 6, 2023. (Xinhua/Wang Xiang)


"I think that China's economic performance in the first half of this year has been actually quite creditable with several signs of strength," Suan Yong Foo, senior economist at ASEAN+3 Macroeconomic Research Office, told Xinhua in a recent interview.

"China has several strategic new emerging industries, ranging from new energy vehicles and solar energy products to new types of services, he said. "There's a lot of scope for further technological advances for digitalization to add even more vitality to these various sectors across China."

"I think China's economic growth prospects are bright for the long term," Foo said. "I would believe that China can make further breakthroughs in sustaining robust growth and also strengthening the resilience of this economy over the long term."

Egyptian economist Waleed Gaballah noted that growth data related to the Chinese economy must not be viewed in isolation and should be considered holistically.

China faces the same challenges as other countries, yet its long-term economic growth is not affected by the challenges, said Gaballah, a member of the Egyptian Association for Political Economy, Statistics and Legislation.

China's ability to possess a sizeable real economy, and its technologies and ability to innovate, guarantee its sustainable development, he added.

The United Nations Conference on Trade and Development said in its World Investment Report 2023 that global foreign direct investment (FDI) fell by 12 percent in 2022, while inflows to China rose by 5 percent to a record 189 billion U.S. dollars, mainly in manufacturing and high-tech industries.


This aerial photo taken on May 2, 2023 shows Jingde night market in Xingqing District of Yinchuan, northwest China's Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region. Yinchuan has been making efforts to bolster its nighttime economy in recent years. (Xinhua/Yang Zhisen)


Observers worldwide believe that in a complex external environment, China's economy has outperformed many countries and has added momentum and injected confidence into world economic growth.

According to the Asian Economic Integration Report 2023 released by the Asian Development Bank (ADB), Asia's economic recovery is driven particularly by China, which accounted for 64.2 percent of total growth.

In the Asian Development Outlook July 2023 released on Wednesday, the ADB is maintaining its growth outlook for developing economies in Asia and the Pacific, "as robust domestic demand continues to support the region's recovery."

Compared to growth figures released by the United States, the eurozone, Japan and Brazil, the overall growth rate of China's economy in the first half of the year is relatively fast.

Japanese professor Hasegawa said that the stable development of China's economy is crucial to the recovery of the world economy amid interest rate hikes in the United States and Europe as well as uncertainties in the world economic and financial environment.

In recent years, some Western countries have adopted aggressive fiscal and monetary policies, triggering shocks in the global economy and financial markets. Their anti-market actions, such as "decoupling and severing supply chains," have not only disrupted global economic and trade exchanges but also hindered the normal economic activities of enterprises.

In contrast, China has maintained the stability and continuity of its macro policies, continuously optimized its business environment, promoted opening-up and injected vitality and confidence into international trade cooperation and economic development.

Gaballah believes that China faces the same external challenges as other countries, but the way it governs its economy is more open and inclusive as it pursues not only its own development but also global development.

"The Chinese economy is not only a catalyst for faster growth of the world economy, but also a catalyst for promoting cooperation, promoting trade and opposing protectionism," Philippine Star columnist Li Tianrong commented.

Editor: Tian Shenyoujia