Efforts to stimulate consumption to spur economic growth paying dividends Personal income and private consumption in mainland cities continued to register double-digit growth in the first three quarters of the year, according to the National Bureau of Statistics. The economy also created 1.58 million jobs for urban residents from January to September, the bureau said, with total city employment reaching 111 million. Total per capita urban disposable income in the first nine months rose 11.7 per cent year on year to 7,902 yuan. Adjusted for inflation, the increase amounted to 9.8 per cent. The average salary of a city worker rose 13.6 per cent to a total of 12,291 yuan over the period. The strong growth in income and consumption is attributed to the government's efforts to stimulate spending by ordinary citizens, to make the mainland's economic growth more sustainable and narrow its increasing wealth gap. China saw a 9.4 per cent growth in gross domestic product in the first three quarters of the year. The figures for the first three quarters represented a slight acceleration of growth in urban disposable incomes. Per capita expenditure in mainland cities stood at 5,950 yuan during the first three quarters, a 10.7 per cent year-on-year rise, or 8.9 per cent after adjusted for inflation. Spending on transport was the fastest growing item, up 30 per cent year on year in the first nine months, on the back of higher global fuel prices and continued growth in the number of cars on mainland roads. Spending on food was up 8.8 per cent, clothing 15.6 per cent, household appliances and services 9.4 per cent, medical and health care 15.3 per cent and communications 8.3 per cent. Retail sales rose 13 per cent year on year to 4.5 trillion yuan during the first three quarters, the bureau said last week, as people increased spending on goods such as cars, mobile phones and services such as air travel. The government is hoping private consumption can become the main driving force behind economic growth, replacing capital investment and exports. Consumption, investment and exports are the main growth engines of the economy.