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Hu: China's Growth Offers Broad Market

Visiting President Hu Jintao said in Toronto Saturday that China's rapid development offers other countries a broad market with 1.3 billion people.


"China's development will benefit not only the 1.3 billion people in China, but also the economic growth in the Asia-Pacific and the world at large, providing other countries with enormous business opportunities and a broad market," Hu said at a dinner of the China-Canada Trade and Economic Cooperation Forum.


The forum was attended by over 800 government officials and businessmen from the two countries.


During the 26 years between 1978 and 2004, China's gross domestic product (GDP) grew from some US$147.3 billion to US$41.6494 trillion, registering an average annual growth rate of 9.4 percent.


China's annual import and export volume jumped from US$20.6 billion to US$1.155 trillion, representing an average annual growth rate of over 16 percent, Hu said.


During the first six months of this year, China's imports and exports reached US$645 billion, up by 23 percent, he said. China's foreign exchange reserves hit US$711 billion by the end of last June.


"Needless to say, China is still a developing country of 1.3 billion people. Its productive forces are not fully developed and its development is still highly uneven. China's GDP as a whole ranks among the world's largest. But in per capita terms, it lags behind the 100th place," Hu said.


China has already identified the goal for the first two decades of this century, which is to build a moderately prosperous society of a higher standard in an all-round way for the benefit of the Chinese people and to quadruple the 2000 GDP by 2020 to about US$4 trillion in aggregate and US$3,000 in per capita terms.


"Right now, China is pushing for the strategy of developing its western region, rejuvenating the old industrial bases in the Northeast, promoting the rise of the central region and encouraging faster development of the eastern region," Hu said.


The "West Development Strategy" alone offers more than 60 key investment projects worth more than US$100 billion ranging from transportation and energy to water conservancy and ecology.


"With countries becoming increasingly interdependent, the global economy has developed into an integral and interactive whole. Such circumstances have left countries with no choice but to go for deepening all-round cooperation for win-win results," Hu said.


Hu arrived in Ottawa on Thursday for a four-day visit to Canada.


(Xinhua News Agency September 11, 2005)

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