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City's industry powers to 46% Jan growth

SHANGHAI'S economy turned bullish last month, with soaring industrial production, busy trade and more outbound investment. Producer prices continued to rise but inflation was within control.

Analysts said the encouraging data suggested a good start for this year, and Shanghai need to accelerate the revamp of its economic structure to make development more sustainable.

Shanghai's industrial production climbed 46 percent from a year earlier to 223.4 billion yuan (US$32.7 billion) in January, the Shanghai Statistics Bureau said today. The growth picked up from an increase of 28.9 percent in December.

Meanwhile, Shanghai's exports extended a gain for the second consecutive month and rose 19.1 percent year on year to US$13.2 billion last month. The growth was short of a 23.5-percent jump in December.

Imports in the city, however, rocketed 82.3 percent on an annual basis to US$12.8 billion in January, up from a rise of 49.5 percent a month earlier.

"The fast recovery in trade is a good harbinger for Shanghai's economic performance this year, because it will boost manufacturing," said Li Maoyu, an analyst at Changjiang Securities Co. "But we can't pin all our hopes on trade but should beef up efforts to stimulate local consumption, and further adjust our economic structure for more independent and sustainable development."

The Producer Price Index, the main factory-gate gauge of inflation, advanced 3.1 percent from a year earlier in January. It was up from a rise of 1.7 percent in December due to cost rises in non-ferrous metal, steel and chemical products, the bureau said.


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