【英语中国】分析:中国调低GDP增速的真实意图

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2011-3-3 23:59

小艾摘要: On Sunday – in a hastily arranged web Q&A with Premier Wen Jiabao – China’s central government announced it will lower its growth target for the next 5 years - to a paltry 7 per cent a year.While ...
On Sunday – in a hastily arranged web Q&A with Premier Wen Jiabao – China’s central government announced it will lower its growth target for the next 5 years - to a paltry 7 per cent a year.

While it may well be a statement of intent – Beijing wants growth to slow – it’s worth remembering how China’s growth in the last 5 years compared to the ‘target’ rate.

China’s previous 5 year plan in 2006 set a growth target for 7.5 per cent growth annually. And yet over that period – which included a global financial crisis – annual growth averaged 9.8 per cent. In 2010, the economy grew 10.3 per cent according to provisional figures (which tend to be revised up).

History suggests that China’s official growth targets are a pretty useless indicator of what the economy will actually do. Analysts haven’t blinked – from Bloomberg this morning:

'RBC Capital Markets said it was sticking with its China economic growth forecast of 9.5 percent for this year and next after Premier Wen Jiabao’s comments on the outlook for the economy.'

Perhaps more interesting were Wen’s comments that explained the need to shift focus away from headline growth (this from the WSJ):

'“We’ll never seek economic growth rate and big size at the price of environment. That would result in unsustainable growth featuring industrial overcapacity and intensive resource consumption.”'

Some might argue that industrial overcapacity and intensive resource consumption aren’t fears but realities of China’s modern economy. And rhetoric alone is unlikely to put on the brakes.

But it may be a signal of real policies to come, according to Dariusz Kowalczyk and Credit Agricole CIB.

'The comments suggest further, multi-pronged monetary tightening, more curbs on the real estate market, and a stronger CNY. Wen said gains will be gradual and driven by their impact on employment, currency flexibility will be increased and that appreciation benefits the economy.'

But even that seems like confirmation of we already knew. So what was the point? Most likely to make a statement to local government leaders – those who actually control the way China grows on the ground – that investment, heavily-polluting industries, and real estate shouldn’t be the key drivers of economic growth. That is easier said than done.

2月27日,在一次仓促安排的“温家宝总理与网友在线交流”活动中,中国中央政府宣布,将把未来5年的年度经济增长目标下调至区区7%。

此项声明很可能传达出一种意向:中国政府希望放慢增长步伐。但我们有必要回想一下,过去5年中国的实际增速与这一增长“目标”之间的比较。

2006年中国制定的上一个“五年计划”,把年度经济增长目标设定为7.5%。但5年来,尽管期间还爆发了全球金融危机,中国经济的年均增长率仍达到9.8%。初步数据显示,2010年中国经济增长了10.3%(初步数据随后往往还会被向上修正)。

历史表明,就预示经济的实际表现而言,中国的官方增长目标可谓一个相当无用的指标。分析师们对此心中有数——彭博社(Bloomberg) 28日上午报道称:

“在温家宝总理就中国经济前景发表讲话后,加拿大皇家银行资本市场(RBC Capital Markets)表示,将坚持自己原先的预测,即中国经济今明两年都将增长9.5%。”

更让人感兴趣的,或许是温家宝在解释有必要转变观念、不要一味追求增长总量时所讲的话:

“我们绝不能再以牺牲环境的代价来换取高速增长、盲目铺摊子,那样就会造成产能过剩,环境资源压力加大,经济发展不可持续。”

有人或许认为,产能过剩和环境资源压力加大并不可怕,它们是中国当代经济的现实。此外,只是嘴上说说,是不太可能让经济增长减速的。

但达留什?科瓦尔奇克(Dariusz Kowalczyk)和东方汇理银行(Credit Agricole CIB)表示,温家宝的言论可能是一个信号,预示着就要出台“动真格”的政策。

“这些言论暗示,北京方面将出台进一步的、多管齐下的货币紧缩措施,加大对房地产市场的抑制力度,并允许人民币升值。温家宝表示,人民币升值要保持渐进性,必须考虑对职工就业的影响,汇率将变得更有弹性,升值符合中国经济的要求。”

但即便如此,这些言论似乎也只是证实了我们已经知道的事情。那么,温家宝的讲话究竟意在何为?最有可能的情况是,温家宝是在借此机会向实际掌控中国基本增长方式的地方政府领导人表明态度:投资、重污染行业以及房地产,不应成为经济增长的主要推动力。而这说起来容易,做起来难!

译者/何黎

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