Shanghai's economy expands 6.9% in 2017

Huang Yixuan
The city's gross domestic product hit a record high by exceeding 3 trillion yuan (US$US$471 billion) for the first time last year.
Huang Yixuan

Shanghai's economy grew steadily in 2017 with the annual gross domestic product expanding 6.9 percent from a year earlier to 3.01 trillion yuan (US$471.37 billion) last year, Shanghai Statistics Bureau said today.

The growth of the city's GDP hit a record high to exceed 3 trillion yuan level for the first time. The pace was the same as the year before and also the same as the national average.

"The city's economic conditions in 2017 remain steady generally,” said Tang Huihao, deputy director of the bureau, during a media briefing. "The trend indicates strong stability and resilience of the economy."

The services sector led growth with an increase of 7.5 percent to 2.08 trillion yuan, accounting for 69 percent of the city's GDP. The manufacturing sector rose 5.8 percent while the agricultural industries down by 9.5 percent.

Value-added industrial output, an important economic indicator, rose by 6.4 percent to 830.35 billion yuan, indicating a rapid growth compared to 2016's 1.0 percent, mainly led by automobile industry with a 19.1-percent growth.

The output of strategic emerging industries of manufacturing advanced 5.7 percent to 1.05 trillion yuan, up 4.2 percentage points from 2016 to be one of the driving forces for the industrial growth.

Specially, Tang highlighted the sharp rise in new energy automobile at 42.6 percent.

"The rapid growth was due to the free vehicle licenses and fiscal subsidies for new energy autos, while a low compartive base as also a reason for the two-digit growth," Tang said.

He also mentioned that the energy conservation and environment protection posted a growth of 7.4 percent as the government has focused more on environment improvement.

Foreign trade in 2017 rose by 12.5 percent from the year before to 3.22 trillion yuan, 9.8 percentage points faster than 2016. In particular, exports increased 8.4 percent and imports jumped 15.4 percent, the bureau said.

Fixed-asset investment rose 7.3 percent year-on-year, up 1.0 percentage point from 2016.

Among them, state-owned enterprise investment rose 18.8 percent to reach 219.23 billion yuan, reversing the 6.6 percent drop of that in 2016. The non-state-owned investment grew 2.9 percent, with individual investment showing a 13.5 percent growth, 1.6 percentage points faster than the previous year.

Fixed-asset investment in infrastructure rose at a faster pace of 9.9 percent while that in real estate development grew 4.0 percent, 2.9 percentage points slower than a year earlier.

The bureau also underlined that more than 579,000 new jobs were created last year, and the registered urban unemployed population declined by 22,000 from that in 2016.

"Shanghai has posted the economic growth of over 6.7 percent for 11 seasons in a row, " Tang said.

"But the city is still facing challenges of inequitable economic growth as Shanghai is in a critical period of transforming development mode, upgrading broader economic structure and shifting growth momentum."

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