China investment approvals, power use up in Q1


BEIJING: China’s top economic planner approved 16 fixed-asset investment (FAI) projects in the first quarter, with combined investment totaling 45.4 billion yuan (about US$6.96bil or RM28.5bil), official data showed yesterday.

The projects were mainly in the transport, energy and high-tech industries, according to the National Development and Reform Commission.

China’s FAI posted a strong rebound in the first quarter of 2021 with continued improvement in investment structure.

The FAI went up 25.6% year-on-year (y-o-y) to 9.6 trillion yuan in the first three months, according to the National Bureau of Statistics.

The double-digit growth was largely driven by a low base of comparison early last year when Covid-19 paralysed economic activities in China. Compared with the 2019 level, FAI growth came in at 6%.

FAI includes capital spent on infrastructure, property, machinery and other physical assets.

China’s electricity consumption, a key barometer of economic activity, soared 21.2% in the first quarter of 2021 as the country’s economy continued to resume growth, data from China’s top economic planner showed yesterday.

Specifically, power use in the primary and secondary industries respectively surged 26.4% and 24.1% y-o-y, and power use in the tertiary industry jumped 28.2% from a year ago, according to the National Development and Reform Commission.

Residential power consumption registered a 4.7% yearly increase in the first three months.

China’s economy grew 18.3% y-o-y in the first quarter, as strong domestic and foreign demand powered recovery from a low base in early 2020 when Covid-19 stalled the world’s second-largest economy.

China’s index of export container transport went down slightly in the past week ending Friday, according to the Shanghai Shipping Exchange.

The average China Containerized Freight Index (CCFI) stood at 1,853.53, down 0.2% from a week earlier, according to the exchange.

The sub-reading for the South-East Asia service led the decline with a week-on-week drop of 1.4%, followed by that for the Europe service and Japan service, which both lost 1.1% from the previous week.

The CCFI tracks spot and contractual freight rates from Chinese container ports for 12 shipping routes across the globe, based on data from 22 international carriers.

The index was set at 1,000 on Jan 1,1998. — Xinhua

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