About two-thirds of China’s provinces, regions and municipalities have cut their 2020 growth targets from last year, despite easing trade tensions with the United States.
The lower regional targets reinforce expectations of a further slowdown in the world’s second-largest economy, after gross domestic product expanded at its slowest pace in nearly three decades in 2019, weighed down by weak domestic and global demand.
Beijing, Shanghai, and the southern export hub of Guangdong all dropped their targets from 6.5% growth to “around 6%” in 2020, in line with the expected change to the national target.
This year is seen as crucial for the ruling Communist Party to fulfill its goal of doubling GDP and incomes in the decade to 2020.
Key national targets are due to be announced in March. Growth cooled to 6.1% in 2019, the weakest in nearly 30 years, and analysts expect it will cool to 5.9% this year even with additional stimulus measures.