China's finance minister says risk of local govt debt under control

China's Finance Minister Lou Jiwei listens to a question at a news conference during the ongoing National People's Congress (NPC), China's parliament, in Beijing, China March 7, 2016. REUTERS/Jason Lee

BEIJING (Reuters) - China’s government debt is not so high, and Beijing will continue to allow local governments to swap debt, Finance Minister Lou Jiwei said in Beijing on Monday.

A total of 5 trillion yuan ($767.71 billion) of local government debt will come due this year, while the outstanding amount of such debt stood at 16 trillion yuan at the end of last year, Lou said at a news conference in Beijing.

Lou added that he believes the risk of local government debt is under control.

Reporting By Xiaoyi Shao and Beijing Monitoring Desk