China has reported a slowdown in growth of its manufacturing sector, underlining concerns that its economic recovery continues to remain fragile.
The official Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI), a key measure of manufacturing activity, fell to a four-month low of 50.1 in June, from 50.8 in May.
A sub-index of new orders also fell, indicating a weak demand.
The manufacturing and export sectors have been key drivers of China’s economic growth in recent years.
However, they have been under pressure lately amid a slowdown in key export markets as well as China’s own economic growth.
“The June PMI fall, across the board on major sub-indexes, indicates downward pressure in the economy,” said Zhang Liqun, an economist with the Development Research Centre, a top government think tank.
Meanwhile a separate report by HSBC, which surveys smaller firms, said that manufacturing activity in the country fell to a nine-month low.
HSBC said its PMI for China fell to 48.2 in June, down from 49.2 in May.