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City GDP growth sinks below 10% for first time since 1992

SHANGHAI'S gross domestic product grew 9.7 percent last year, dipping below 10 percent for the first time since 1992.

The city's industrial output increased 8 percent on year to about 2.44 trillion yuan (US$357 billion) in 2008, said Cai Xuchu, spokesman of the Shanghai Bureau of Statistics.

Shanghai's consumer price index climbed 5.8 percent last year compared to 3.2 percent in 2007.

Abut 9.45 million people were employed by the end of last year, up 359,200 from a year ago.

The global economic crisis might affect the city this year, especially the industry and export sectors, but lower energy and raw material prices would help local enterprises increase profits, Cai said.

The financial and real estate sectors, which declined last year after years of boom, may boost Shanghai's economy this year. Infrastructure projects related to World Expo 2010 would also increase this year in the city, Cai added.


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