China’s industrial output up 18 percent in July

Beijing : China’s industrial output grew by 18 percent in July, the National Bureau of Statistics said.
More than 98 percent of the industrial products were sold in July and the export volume of industrial products stood at 608.5 billion yuan ($80 billion), up 22.2 percent, the bureau said.

Among major industries, the transport facility manufacturing industry saw the biggest growth of 26.6 percent, followed by the general equipment-manufacturing sector that rose by 23.5 percent. The textile industry grew by 15.8 percent and the chemical industry 20.2 percent.

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The output of coal jumped by 12.7 percent to 196 million tonnes and power generation capacity increased by 15.5 percent to 291.6 billion KW. Oil production dropped by 1.7 percent to 15.47 million tonnes.

“The industrial output in the second half of this year would remain stable as the July figure dropped slightly,” said Zhang Liqun, an economist with the State Council Development and Research Centre.

China’s industrial output expanded by 18.5 percent in the first half of 2007. In June alone, industrial output jumped 19.4 percent year-on-year.

Chinese retail sales in July rose 16.4 percent year-on-year to reach 699.8 billion yuan ($92 billion), according to the bureau.

Another major economic barometer – consumer price index (CPI) – rose by a 33-month-high 5.6 percent in July on food price hikes compared with the same period of last year, said the bureau.

Zhang predicted China’s GDP will not grow drastically in the second half and the CPI will drop in the fourth quarter when the existing tightening policies take effect.

The country’s economy will enjoy fast growth with low inflation, he said.