China Economic Data

China’s retail sales of consumer goods went up 33.9 percent year on year in the first quarter of this year, the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) said Friday.

The growth reversed from declines seen in the first quarter last year, when consumer spending was disrupted by the COVID-19 epidemic.

Average Q1 growth for the past two years stood at 4.2 percent, the NBS said.

In March, retail sales surged 34.2 percent year on year and was 12.9 percent higher from the 2019 level. The two-year average growth was 6.3 percent.

China’s fixed-asset investment (FAI) went up 25.6 percent year on year in the first quarter of 2021, data from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) showed Friday.

The FAI amounted to 9.6 trillion yuan (about 1.47 trillion U.S. dollars) in the first three months, according to the NBS.

The double-digit growth was driven by a low base of comparison early last year when COVID-19 paralyzed economic activities in China. Compared with the 2019 level, FAI growth came in at 6 percent.

Investment by the state sector went up 25.3 percent during the January-March period, while private-sector investment rose 26 percent.

On a month-on-month basis, FAI rose 1.51 percent in March.

The FAI includes capital spent on infrastructure, property, machinery and other physical assets.

China’s economy grew 18.3 percent year on year in the first quarter of 2021, as strong domestic and foreign demands powered recovery from a low base in early 2020 when COVID-19 stalled the world’s second largest economy.

The gross domestic product (GDP) reached 24.93 trillion yuan (about 3.82 trillion U.S. dollars) in Q1, data from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) showed Friday.

The double-digit growth puts the average Q1 growth of 2020 and 2021 at 5 percent from the 2019 level.

In the first three months, China saw a steady industrial production rebound, improvement in market sales, recovery in fixed-asset investment, and noticeable momentum in foreign trade of goods, according to the NBS.

The Chinese economy registered a 6.8-percent contraction in the Q1 of 2020 due to the novel coronavirus. Thanks to resolute and effective virus control, the global growth engine regained its footing with a “V-shaped” comeback to attain three consecutive quarters of rebound last year (3.2 percent in Q2, 4.9 percent in Q3 and 6.5 percent in Q4).