China forecasts $154.4 billion deficit

March 5, 2010 at 7:25 AM
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BEIJING, March 5 (UPI) -- China has forecast a deficit of $154.4 billion in this year's budget resulting from more spending to support economic growth.

The deficit forecast was contained in a government work report presented by Premier Wen Jiabao at the annual session of parliament that opened Friday, Xinhua reported.

The report said government revenue will fall significantly short of expenditures.

The deficit in the planned budget, however, will still be only about 2.8 percent of this year's gross domestic product, with the economy expected to grow at 8 percent.

China's fiscal deficit last year was 950 billion yuan or about $140 billion, the highest in six years. China's GDP last year grew 8.7 percent from the previous year to 33.5 trillion yuan or $4.9 trillion.

The report said government will continue to implement its policy of tax reductions to expand domestic demand and promote economic restructuring.

The government's targets this year include creating more than 9 million jobs in cities, keeping the urban unemployment rate under 4.6 percent and inflation at about 3 percent.

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