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Tuesday, 17 July, 2001, 06:41 GMT 07:41 UK
China's economy booms
Chinese workers
China booms despite the global economic slump
China's economy grew by 7.9% in the first half of the year compared with the same period in 2000, official statistics showed Tuesday.

The growth rate was in line with expectations as government statisticians had previously said the economy would grow by about eight percent in the first half of the year.

But China's economy has been hit by the global economic slowdown which has led to a slump in exports.

"In the first half of the year, every area and every government department ... worked hard to overcome problems from the international economy and from serious droughts in some areas at home," an government official said.

In the second quarter of this year, China's economy grew by 7.8%, a slightly slower rate than the first-quarter growth of 8.1%.

The government warned of tougher times ahead in the second half of this year because of the continued weak global economic outlook.

But it said the economy may meet or even exceed its seven percent target for economic growth for all of 2001 set at the beginning of the year.

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