More macro control measures needed to rein in galloping economy


Updated Mon, 07 Aug 2006 00:00:00 GMT

Despite efforts to slow the pace down, China's economy reported breakneck growth in first half year. Now officials and experts are saying that more macro control measures must be adopted to rein in the galloping economy.
China's economy surged a year-on-year 10.9 percent in the first half of 2006 and total investment in roads, factory equipment and other fixed assets soared 29.8 percent, an increase of 4.4 percentage points on the same period last year.
With oodles of money and investment flushing around in the economy while progress on social issues remains slow, China's economic development is becoming unbalanced.
"Efforts must be made to solve key problems and contradictions in the national economy so that China can keep growing quickly but in a stable and coordinated manner," said Shi Gang, an official with the National Development and Reform Commission.
According to Shi's analysis, the world economy will remain stable in the second semester, meaning that there will be continued strong demand for Chinese goods. Meanwhile, domestic demand remains buoyant.
Experts said further reforms were required in relation to investment rules, the renminbi exchange rate mechanism and economic management.
China has been working hard to rein in its overheated economy. The central bank raised its benchmark interest rate last April to curb money oversupply. The Ministry of Land and Resources has tightened land use to restrain new projects.
These measures have begun to take effect. Government statistics show that loans approved up to June were 70.6 billion yuan down on the same period last year.
The central government has earmarked 12.5 billion yuan for farmers to subsidize agricultural goods price hikes. Due to government support, the average income of farmers rose nearly 12 percent in the first half year.
Despite the progress made, China's economy still faces a serious risk of unbalanced development.
Top Chinese leaders are calling for better regulation of the country's macro economy. President Hu Jintao said last week that fixed assets investment should be reined in during the second half year and more effective measures taken in the field of macroeconomic control.
He urged that measures be taken in relation to loans, land supply and environmental protection in order to restrain blind growth in high energy-consuming and polluting industries.

Premier Wen Jiabao called for steady and continuous economic development in the second half year, curbing overheating in fixed assets investment and further controlling the real estate market.