Shanghai shares eke out small gains

China sets an unchanged GDP growth target of 6.5 percent for 2018, with a focus on high-quality development of the economy.

Shanghai shares edged up today after China set an unchanged GDP growth target this year and emphasizes high-quality development of the economy. 

The Shanghai Composite Index added 0.07 percent to close at 3,256.93 points.

China targets 6.5 percent growth for its economy this year, flat from 2017, and will focus on high-quality development, Premier Li Keqiang said in his government's work report during the 13th National People's Congress in Beijing today.

“In 2018, China will further deepen supply-side structural reform, encourage innovation and promote high-quality development,” Li said. “Last year, we have fully completed major objectives and tasks of economic and social development."

China’s economy grew by 6.9 percent last year, above the government’s official target of 6.5 percent and was 0.2 percentage points higher than 6.7 percent growth in 2016, data from the National Bureau of Statistics showed.

While the government has kept the same GDP growth target for this year, "more attention has been paid to key indicators such as employment, price, household income and environmental improvement in the government's report which was released today,” said Zhang Zhanbin, a researcher with the Chinese Academy of Governance.

Li Daxiao, head of research and chief economist at Yingda Securities, said that the GDP growth target of 6.5 percent in 2018 signifies that China is entering a new phase of high-quality development that will also improve the quality of listed A-share companies, enhance investment value of blue-chips and develop the stock market steadily.

Henan Ancai Hi-Tech Co surged by the daily limit of 10 percent to 8.33 yuan (US$1.31), Ningbo Joyson Electronic Co rose 5.97 percent to 31.95 yuan and Hangzhou Youngsun Intelligent Equipment Co added 4.99 percent to 9.26 yuan.

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