China's National Bureau of Statistics has released data that shows its annual GDP growth in December quarter 2020 at 6.5%. This is a major raise from 2.3% in March quarter 2020. Last year, China's economy was growing at the slowest pace in over four decades. The 2.3% expansion is the lowest figure since the economic reforms of the 1970s.
China is the only major economy in the world with positive GDP growth in 2020. All major economies, country groups, and sub-regions in East Asia and the Pacific are expected to experience a contraction in their GDP in 2020. In March 2020, China was fighting the beginning of COVID-19.
The Chinese economy is also expected to outperform most of the major economies in 2021 even though other nations will have a more favourable base effect due to economic contraction this year.
The National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) said last year was a "grave and complex environment both at home and abroad" with the pandemic having a "huge impact".
Reuters reported that the Chinese economy’s exceptional performance has “been fuelled by a surprisingly resilient export sector” even as “consumption – a key driver of growth – has lagged expectations”.