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Business

China president sees economy on 'smooth' slowdown

Under a plan for more sustainable growth, China’s economy is in a phase of controlled slowdown, President Xi Jinping has said. Fears of a ‘hard landing’ of the world’s second largest economy are unfounded, he says.

The recent slowdown in China's economy was taking place in a controlled fashion, and there was no reason for fears of a hard landing, China's President Xi Jinping said Monday.

Speaking before the Asia-Pacific Forum, currently being held in Indonesia, Xi outlined recent Chinese economic policy saying the change was proceeding smoothly on the whole.

“Nothing has come as a surprise… the slowdown of the Chinese economy is an intended result of our own regulatory initiatives,” Xi said.

In the first half of 2013, China's economic growth slipped to 7.6 percent from the 9.3 percent recorded in 2011. The slowdown is seen as a result of Beijing's plan to base growth on more sustainable foundations by spurring domestic consumption rather than boosting exports.

Acknowledging international concerns about the new economic policy, Xi said that a comprehensive analysis of all factors made him confident about the future of China's economy.

Xi also noted that China's economy was still the fastest-growing among major economies, adding that the current rate of 7.6 percent expansion was within the reasonable and expected range.

Last month, the Asian Development Bank (ABD) cut its forecast for growth in the Asia-Pacific region, citing sluggish expansion in China as a main reason for the slowdown.

Xi Jinping said, however, that China would need to press ahead with structural reforms to ensure long-term economic development, even if this would mean some sacrifice of economic growth.

uhe/jm (AFP, Reuters, AP)