China's economy continues to be among the world strongest as the global powerhouse laid down its 2017 Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth target at around 6.5 percent on Sunday, international media reported.
China has set its GDP growth target at around 6.5 percent for 2017, compared with a target range of 6.5-7 percent for 2016, according to a government work report released at an annual session of the National People's Congress (NPC) -- China's top legislature.[Special coverage]
The target of "around 6.5 percent or higher if possible" is down from last year's goal, "but, if it is achieved, still would be among the world's strongest," the Associated Press reported Sunday.
It also reflects "confidence that efforts to create new industries are gaining traction," it said.
"(China will) pursue better results in actual economic work," according to the report delivered by Premier Li Keqiang at the opening meeting of the annual NPC session.
The projected target is in line with both economic principles and realities, the report said, adding that it will help stabilize market expectations and facilitate the country's structural adjustments.
It will also contribute to achieving the goal of fulfilling the construction of China into a moderately prosperous society in all respects by 2020.
In an article titled "Firm reforms stressed for strong Chinese economy," the Pakistan Daily Times reported that "following strong rebounds in January's exports and imports and the producer price index rising to a five-year high, the latest figures once again dispelled worries of a hard landing in the world's second largest economy."
"China's economy has performed strongly this year," the Financial Times reported on Wednesday.
The Reuters news agency echoed in a report that "China's factory activity expanded faster than expected in February as domestic and export demand picked up, adding to signs that the global economy is regaining momentum even as fears grow of a surge in trade protectionism."
The nominal GDP growth, which is calculated without adjusting for inflation, will be 9.5 percent or even higher in the first quarter of 2017, due to signs of improving economic activity and low bases, said China International Capital Corp. Ltd. (CICC) in a research report.
China's GDP expanded by 6.7 percent last year to 74.4 trillion yuan (about 10.8 trillion U.S. dollars), according to Li's report.
The growth outpaced most other economies and accounted for more than 30 percent of global growth.