Business & Economy

China’s Q1 GDP expands 4.5% after end of ‘zero Covid’

Shanghai, China, Apr 18 (EFE).- China’s gross domestic product (GDP) expanded 4.5 percent in the first quarter of the year compared to the same period in 2022, official data on Monday showed.

The figure exceeded analysts’ expectations that had pointed to an increase of 4 percent.

The world’s second largest economy also grew 2.2 percent quarter-on-quarter between January and March this year, in line with analysts’ forecasts.

The figures released by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) represent a marked improvement over the data of the last quarter of 2022, when the country’s economy did not experience any change on a quarter-on-quarter basis, although it did rebound by 2.9 percent year-on-year.

The primary sector grew by 3.7 percent year-on-year in the first quarter of 2023 while the secondary expanded by 3.3 percent, and the tertiary, 5.4 percent.

China’s GDP between January and March stood at 28.5 trillion yuan ($4.15 trillion).

The NBS pointed to the dismantling of the nationwide “zero Covid” policy, which had weighed down the economy last year, as a favorable factor during the first quarter.

“A smooth transition in Covid-19 prevention and control to the new phase was secured in a relatively short time, the production and demand registered a stable recovery, employment and prices were kept generally stable, residents income continued to rise, market expectation saw significant improvement and the national economy made a good start (to the year),” the NBS said.

The agency also published other official data for March, including industrial production, which rose 3.9 percent year-on-year.

Total retail sales of consumer goods also increased by 10.6 percent in the third month of the year while the unemployment rate in urban areas declined from 5.6 percent in February to 5.3 percent. EFE


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