Overtakes Germany; change occurs a year before expected
China has overtaken Germany to become the world’s third-largest economy earlier than expected, after estimates for the country’s gross domestic product were revised higher.
The National Bureau of Statistics of China reported this on Thursday. It now believes the Chinese economy grew by 13 per cent in 2007, up from an earlier estimate of 11.9 per cent and China’s highest annual growth rate since 1993.
Applying the revision to previous calculations carried out by the World Bank shows that China’s gross national income reached $3.218 trillion in 2007, compared with $3.197 trillion for Germany.
Economists were already confident that China overtook Germany during 2008, but it now seems that the change occurred a year earlier. China took fourth place from Britain in 2005, and now has Japan and the U.S. in its sights.
China’s rapid economic growth began to tail off last year, as the manufacturing powerhouse felt the impact of the woes sweeping the global economy. The GDP growth fell to 9 per cent in the third quarter of 2008, down from 10.1 per cent in the second quarter and the fifth straight quarter of slowing growth.
Before this latest revision, analysts had predicted that the Chinese economy would grow by around 7.9 per cent in 2009 — this compares to the U.K. where the recession could slice 2 per cent off GDP. — © Guardian Newspapers Limited, 2009
China will resolutely advance its reform and opening-up despite the global financial crisis, said Jia Qinglin, chairman of the National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) on Wednesday. “We will make full use of the favourable international and domestic conditions to ensure stable and rapid economic growth and social harmony,” Mr. Jia told visiting Ukrainian Defence Minister Yuriy Yekhanurov.
He said the financial crisis had affected the world economy, affecting energy resources and grain security. Meanwhile, Iran and China signed a $1.76-billion deal for the development of Iran’s North Azadegan oilfield. The field, located in Iran’s western province of Khuzestan, had an estimated reserve of six billion barrels of oil and could produce 75,000 barrels per day for 25 years.