Shanghai Abandons Growth Target as it Moves to Qualitative Measures

Shanghai has ditched its official economic growth target for 2015, becoming the first major city or province in China to abandon such metrics as government policy shifts towards a focus on growth quality over quantity.

The move signifies both a nationwide move to switch focus from hitting annual targets with some of the fastest growth rates in the world — now that those rates are waning — as well as an effort to de-link growth from promotions at the local level.

Growth in gross domestic product has long been a key metric to evaluate the performance of local officials, helping to determine whether they were promoted. But President Xi Jinping last year said that “we can no longer simply use GDP growth rates to decide who the [party] heroes are”.

At least 70 smaller cities and counties abandoned GDP targets last year, mostly in areas with high poverty rates and those with special agricultural or ecological value.

But the move by Shanghai — one of four Chinese megacities with province-level administrative status — marks the first such move by a highly developed urban area. At least two municipal districts in Shanghai had previously cancelled gross domestic product targets for 2015, the official Xinhua news agency reported.

via CNBC

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Alfonso Esparza

Alfonso Esparza

Senior Currency Analyst at Market Pulse
Alfonso Esparza specializes in macro forex strategies for North American and major currency pairs. Upon joining OANDA in 2007, Alfonso Esparza established the MarketPulseFX blog and he has since written extensively about central banks and global economic and political trends. Alfonso has also worked as a professional currency trader focused on North America and emerging markets. He has been published by The MarketWatch, Reuters, the Wall Street Journal and The Globe and Mail, and he also appears regularly as a guest commentator on networks including Bloomberg and BNN. He holds a finance degree from the Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education (ITESM) and an MBA with a specialization on financial engineering and marketing from the University of Toronto.
Alfonso Esparza