China has ample room for macro policy support: stats bureau chief

A woman works on a production line manufacturing paper tableware at a factory in Hangzhou, Zhejiang province, China January 21, 2019. REUTERS/Stringer

BEIJING (Reuters) - China has ample room for macro policy support, Ning Jizhe, head of the National Bureau of Statistics said on Monday, after the world’s second-largest economy grew at the slowest pace since the global financial crisis in the fourth quarter of 2018.

China has confidence and the capacity to achieve reasonable growth this year, Ning said, adding that the slowing economy has shown some signs of stabilisation over the past two months.

Ning said that while the China-U.S. trade war has affected China’s economy the impact on growth is manageable.

China’s economic growth cooled slightly in the fourth quarter from a year earlier as expected, weighed down by weak investment and faltering consumer confidence as Washington piled on trade pressure, leaving 2018 growth the weakest in 28 years.

Reporting by Chen Yawen and Beijing Monitoring Desk; Editing by Shri Navaratnam