China’s economy, after battling strong global economic and geopolitical headwinds, a debt crisis in the all-important property sector, and severe self-imposed constraints related to its now abandoned zero-Covid policy, posted on Tuesday a year-on-year growth in 2022 of 3.0%, a marked slowdown from 2021’s 8.4% growth. It's also one of the country's slowest growth rates in decades.
By quarter, the GDP for the first quarter went up by 4.8% year on year, up by 0.4% for the second quarter, 3.9% for the third quarter and 2.9% for the fourth quarter, according to data from China’s National Bureau of Statistics. The quarter-on-quarter growth of GDP for the fourth quarter stayed the same as that for the third quarter.
By industries, primary industrial growth was up by 4.1% over last year, with secondary industry up 3.8% and tertiary industry up 2.3%. The total value added of industrial enterprises increased by 3.6% over the previous year. In terms of sectors, mining was up by 7.3%, manufacturing up 3.0% and the production and supply of electricity, thermal power, gas and water up by 5.0%.
High-tech and equipment manufacturing went up by 7.4% and 5.6% respectively.
The value added of services went up by 2.3% year on year in 2022, while that of information transmission, software as well as information technology services, and of financial services grew by 9.1% and 5.6% respectively.
In 2022, total retail sales of consumer goods was down by 0.2% over the previous year.
Investment in fixed assets (excluding rural households) was up by 5.1% over the previous year. Specifically, the investment in infrastructure went up by 9.4%, manufacturing up by 9.1% and real estate development down by 10.0%.
“The national economy continued to develop despite downward pressure, the economic output reached a new level, the employment and prices were generally stable,” the bureau says. “Generally speaking, positive results have been achieved in effectively coordinating the Covid-19 prevention and control and the economic and social development in 2022, with stabilized macroeconomic performance, continuously expanded economic output and steadily improved development quality.
“However, the foundation of domestic economic recovery is not solid as the international situation is still complicated and severe, while the domestic triple pressure of demand contraction, supply shock and weakening expectations is still looming.”