Last year's economic growth the fastest in 11 years after revision

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 31 August, 2006, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 31 August, 2006, 12:00am

Authorities revised last year's national gross domestic product growth rate to 10.2 per cent yesterday - up from the previous estimate of 9.9 per cent - marking the fastest economic growth since 1995.

The change is mainly the result of a revision of the services sector's growth. In an announcement on its website, the National Bureau of Statistics said the mainland's GDP reached 18.3 trillion yuan last year.

Although the upward revision is only 0.3 of a percentage point, last year now becomes the third successive year of double-digit growth. The announcement could give the government more impetus to slow investment and credit growth, analysts said.

'This is an enormous growth rate. It's a sign that clamping down is not the wrong way to go,' said Carsten Holz, an economist at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology.

He said a 0.3-percentage-point revision was normal and within the margin of error. Recent data from the mainland's provinces which showed faster growth than the national average hinted at the need for an upward revision.

Beijing has already raised interest rates and imposed administrative measures to slow an economy which shows signs of overheating.

The bureau said primary industry grew an annual 5.2 per cent last year, unchanged from the previous estimate. The secondary - or manufacturing - industry grew 11.7 per cent, up from the previous estimate of 11.4 per cent, and the tertiary industry - the services sector - grew 10 per cent, up from 9.6 per cent.

Early this year, Beijing revised upwards GDP data going back for more than a decade after finding the services sector was bigger than previously thought. Analysts say the changes have made comparing historical data more difficult.

Last year, the secondary industry made up 47.5 per cent of the GDP, followed by the tertiary industry (39.9) and the primary industry (12.6), the bureau said.