China’s GDP expanded by an annual rate of just nine percent in the third quarter of 2008, down from 10.1 percent in the previous three months.
Although the figures may be distorted as Beijing closed factories to reduce pollution during the Olympics in August, the National Statistics Bureau said it is inevitable a world economic slowdown is having an effect.
The bureau’s spokesman, Li Xiaochao, explained: “As China is opening up more to the outside world and China’s economy becomes more closely linked with the world economy, China has suffered from the impact of the global financial crisis.”
China’s industrial boom has slowed as demand for the country’s products has fallen. Economists predicted that trend will continue for the foreseeable future.
The property sector is also weakening from tight credit and government moves to prevent the kind of bubbles that have caused problems for the US and some European economies.
Inflation slowed in September to 4.6 percent – its lowest level in 15 months – largely thanks to moderating food costs, which could allow the government to further ease monetary and fiscal policy.