December 14, 2016 / 11:03 AM / a year ago

China leaders convene for key economic meeting: Xinhua

BEIJING (Reuters) - China’s top leaders have started an annual meeting to map out economic and reform plans for 2017, state media reported on Wednesday.

China's national flag is seen in front of cranes on a construction site at a commercial district in Beijing, China, January 26, 2016. REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon

The annual Central Economic Work Conference is keenly watched by investors for clues on policy priorities and key economic targets for the year ahead.

Xinhua news agency said the meeting began on Wednesday, but it did not say when the conference would end.

In 2015, the meeting was held Dec. 18-21.

Chinese leaders pledged on Friday to further promote supply-side reform in 2017 while also pushing state sector and fiscal reform.

The government is expected to hold off from announcing specific 2017 economic targets, including GDP growth, investment and money supply growth, until the annual parliament meeting in March.

China is on pace to meet its annual growth target of 6.5 to 7 percent this year, but faces rising risks from potential asset price bubbles as economic restructuring has slowed.

The economy also faces challenges from slow growth in private sector investment, an overheated housing market and industrial overcapacity.

Reporting by Beijing Monitoring Desk; Editing by Jacqueline Wong

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