China central bank governor says growth momentum robust

Aug. 19, 2013 at 11:57 PM
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BEIJING, Aug. 19 (UPI) -- China's economic growth momentum remains robust and consecutive drops in the GDP growth rates are unlikely, the governor of the country's central bank said.

In an interview Monday with the China Central Television, which was reported by China Daily, Zhou Xiaochuan, governor of the People's Bank of China, said the bank will maintain its stance in the second half of the year "although some minor adjustments might be needed."

China's gross domestic product growth rate fell to 7.5 percent in the second quarter from 7.7 percent in the prior quarter, raising concerns about the country's slowing economy, the world's second-largest after that of the United States.

Zhou said a GDP growth rate of 7.5 percent is a normal level, and that no major changes are needed in the bank's monetary policy.

"Against the backdrop of the weak global economy, it's already not easy for China to secure such stable economic growth, with more than 7 million new jobs in the first half," he said.

The bank official said the domestic momentum driving China's growth remains robust, and a consecutive drop in the GDP growth is unlikely.

"We'll find a balance point, where we can not only maintain relatively quick growth, but also optimize the economic structure, and thus leave space for undertaking further reforms," he said.

Asked if there could be another liquidity crunch as was seen in the interbank market last June, Zhou said that China's market liquidity is ample in the medium term, adding the bank is prepared to liberalize commercial lenders' deposit interest rates.

"We've got the techniques and other conditions prepared for realizing such liberalization as soon as possible," he said.

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