HOPES RISE THAT CHINA IS REGAINING MOMENTUM
By Thomas Clouse
China grew at its slowest rate in 13 years in 2012, but an acceleration in the fourth quarter has raised hopes that the economy is regaining momentum.
|Photo Credits: BARTLOMIEJMAGIEROWSKI / SHUTTERSTOCK.COM|
According to the country’s National Bureau of Statistics, China’s GDP expanded by 7.8% for the year, its slowest rate of growth since 1999.
However, fourth quarter year-on-year growth was 7.9%, up from 7.4% in the third quarter — the first such acceleration in two years. Exports, retail sales and industrial production all rose in December, contributing to the revival in growth and optimism for continued expansion.
State-run PetroChina, the country’s largest oil producer, will purchase a 10.2% stake in the Browse Australian liquefied natural gas project from BHP Billiton and partner with Canadian natural gas producer Encana to develop shale-gas fields. The announcements came days after the Canadian government approved China’s largest overseas acquisition to date, CNOOC’s purchase of Albertan oil and gas company Nexen. According to research firm Dealogic, China’s outbound mergers and acquisitions totaled $59.7 billion from January to mid-December 2012.