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China expects steady, rapid growth in 2012

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BEIJING, June 1 (Xinhua) -- China's economy will maintain steady and rapid development momentum this year though facing downward pressures, said a senior official on Friday.

The overall economic conditions are good and growth rates are within the expected range, said Du Ying, vice minister of National Development and Reform Commission, at a press conference.

In a recent meeting of the State Council, policy makers reiterated the keynote of seeking further progress while maintaining a stable situation and made growth a bigger priority, he said.

The government would continue with structural tax reduction, stick to prudent monetary policy, focus on promoting consumption and maintaining a rational investment scale, and meanwhile keep exports stable, according to Du.

China's economy grew at its slowest pace in almost three years in the first quarter of 2012, with its gross domestic product expanding only 8.1 percent during the period.

A string of economic indicators in April suggested further economic weaknesses in the world's second-largest economy amid renewed uncertainty in Europe, prompting policymakers to adopt swift measures to stabilize growth.

The State Council, or China's cabinet, on Wednesday adopted a plan to boost the development of seven strategic emerging industries as the country's economy slows.

The named industries include energy-saving and environmental protection, information technology, biology, advanced equipment manufacturing, new energy, new materials and new-energy vehicles.

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