China's consumer price index last month sustained modest growth of 0.9 of a per cent compared with December, partly because prices increased during the Lunar New Year. The benchmark index was 1.5 per cent higher when compared with the annual average last year, according to the State Statistical Bureau. This year it has changed its CPI calculation method, using 2000 as a base rather than using previous-year figures. The CPI increase indicated China was slowly coming out of the shadow of deflation, said Xinhua, quoting the bureau. December's 1.5 per cent CPI increase over November was already seen by some economists as a sign China was emerging from a three-year deflationary trend. The CPI last year rose a year-on-year 0.4 per cent. However, Horwath International Asia-Pacific division regional director Clement Chan Kam-wing said there were still deflationary pressures from high unemployment as Beijing continues restructuring state-owned enterprises.