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GDP forecast at 9.5% in 2010

CHINA'S economy is expected to grow 9.5 percent this year, bolstered by fast-growing real estate investments and consumption, a government economist said.

"Real estate investments will grow 30 percent to 40 percent this year to become the major source that drives investment growth," Zhang Liqun, an economist at the Development Research Center, a think-tank under the State Council, said in a report on China Securities Journal today.

Besides, corporate investments will turn positive in the period with growth forecast of 20 percent, Zhang said.

"The external environment will remain rather grim but will not deteriorate further, and exports will end their declines to start growth again," he said.

China overtook Germany as the world's largest exporter last year, despite overseas shipments in 2009 dropping 16 percent.

Consumption will keep a similar growth rate as last year supported by consistent stimulus to encourage buying homes and cars and improving employment and income, he said.


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