March 5, 2015 / 12:59 AM / 3 years ago

China aims for around seven percent economic growth in 2015: Premier Li

A worker welds at a construction site in Yiliang, Yunnan province, February 28, 2015. REUTERS/Stringer

BEIJING (Reuters) - China aims to grow its economy by around 7 percent in 2015 and to keep consumer inflation at around 3 percent, Premier Li Keqiang said in remarks prepared for delivery at today’s opening of the annual meeting of parliament, the National People’s Congress.

The annual growth target was lower than a target of 7.5 percent in 2014, reflecting the government’s bid to pursue slower but higher-quality growth after three decades of breakneck expansion.

Weighed down by a sputtering housing market, industrial overcapacity and reduced government investment, China’s economy grew 7.4 percent in 2014, its slowest expansion in 24 years.

The government will keep annual growth in broad M2 money supply at about 12 percent, Li said in the work report.

Li also said China would have a budget deficit of 2.3 percent of gross domestic product in 2015.

Reporting by Kevin Yao, Koh Gui Qing, Judy Hua, Kathy Chen, and Dominique Patton.

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