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China expects to maintain 6.9% growth in H2, central bank chief says

China expects the momentum of a 6.9% GDP growth rate in the first half to continue in the second half of the year, even as the government seeks to encourage deleveraging and prevent potential risks, according to the governor of the country's central bank.

In a statement, People's Bank of China Governor Zhou Xiaochuan said economic growth has been strengthening, as indicated by GDP growth of 6.9% in the first half of the year. "Imports and exports grew strongly, with the current account surplus expected to shrink further," Zhou noted. "Fiscal revenues continued to grow, and prices remained stable."

Meanwhile, Zhou said, China will continue to implement a comprehensive set of policy measures to address weaknesses in the economy, encourage deleveraging and prevent potential risks, including those from shadow banking activities and housing market bubbles.

Zhou's comments came after Ning Jizhe, head of China's Statistics Bureau, said that the country is on track to hit its 2017 economic growth target of about 6.5%, and may even beat it. Further, the International Monetary Fund recently boosted its projection for China's growth rate in 2017 to 6.8% from 6.6% because of stronger-than-expected first-half output.