China’s economic growth fell to a 29-year low of 6.1% in 2019 from 6.6% in 2018, the country’s National Bureau of Statistics data showed on Friday, Jan. 17.
Though the growth rate still remains within the government’s target range for 2019 at 6.0%-6.5%, it marks the slowest since 1990, according to Reuters records.
In the fourth quarter of 2019, the world’s second largest economy grew 6%, equal to the speed of the third quarter, which also represents the slowest pace since the first quarter of 1992.
China continued to slow down as weaker exports, investment, and consumer spending weighed on the economy.
Data showed that China’s exports reached $2.50 trillion in 2019, up 0.5%—much slower growth than the previous year, as the trade dispute between Beijing and Washington reduced its shipments to the United States.
Total retail sales of consumer goods slowed to 8% in 2019 from 9% in 2018, while fixed-asset investment slowed to 5.4% from 5.9%.
The data came one day after President Donald Trump signed a Phase One trade deal with China, helping lessen trade tensions between the two countries—at least in the short term.
Nikkei Asian Review citing strategist Zhu Chaoping of J.P. Morgan Asset Management said China’s fourth-quarter growth holding steady reflects the effect of fiscal stimulus, and respite from the trade war cease-fire.
“The uncertainties faced by corporates are diminishing along with the progress in U.S.-China trade negotiation since December,” Zhu said.
“Although the U.S. government maintained most of the tariffs on Chinese products, the signing of the phase-one trade deal is a signal that the situation is unlikely to deteriorate. Against this background, corporate confidence keeps improving in the recent months,” Zhu added.