IMF cuts 2013 China growth forecast to 'around 7.75%'

A man plays a flute as a driver holds out money on a road in Beijing on May 24, 2013. The International Monetary Fund expects China's economy to grow "around 7.75 percent" in 2013, a top fund official said Wednesday, lower than the 8.0 percent the organisation forecast last month.

The International Monetary Fund expects China's economy to grow "around 7.75 percent" in 2013, a top fund official said Wednesday, lower than the 8.0 percent the organisation forecast last month.

"The Chinese economy is expected to grow at around 7.75% this year and at about the same pace next year," David Lipton, IMF first deputy managing director, told reporters in Beijing, blaming slower export growth for the lower figure.

The IMF's World Economic Outlook report released last month had forecast growth of 8.0 percent this year and 8.2 percent for 2014 -- both of those predictions themselves reductions from previous ones made in January.

China's economy grew 7.8 percent in 2012 -- its slowest pace in 13 years -- and registered a surprisingly weak 7.7 percent expansion in the first three months of this year, well below forecasts.

Lipton said weakness in the global economy was a factor in slowing Chinese export growth.

The lowered gross domestic product forecast "comes essentially from looking at the global economy and the pace of growth in the global economy and the demand that derives from that growth for Chinese exports", he said.

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