China's economy expanded 7.5 percent year-on-year in the second quarter, further slowing from 7.7 percent growth in the first quarter, official data showed Monday. Gross domestic product (GDP) of the world's second-largest economy in the April-June period marked the second consecutive quarter of decline, according to data released by the National Bureau of Statistics. For the first half, GDP grew 7.6 percent from the same period last year, still above the government-set 2013 growth target of 7.5 percent.
The industrial output growth increased 9.3 percent in the first half from a year earlier, slower than the 9.5-percent expansion posted in the same period of last year. The investment in fixed assets, excluding rural households, grew 20.1 percent in the January-June period year-on-year, down 0.8 percentage point from the January-March period.
However, bureau spokesman Sheng Laiyun said China's economy has maintained a steady growth, according to state-run Xinhua News Agency. "Major economic indicators are still within reasonable ranges as expected, but the economic environment remains complex," Sheng told a press conference in Beijing, adding that the market should play a better role to bring out the economy's intrinsic vigor. The latest GDP figures headed a string of other data showing a continuous slowdown in the world's second-largest economy after China's full-year annual growth eased to 7.8 percent in 2012, its weakest since 1999.