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China's retail sales up 12.9% in May

Staff writer |
China's retail sales growth slightly increased in May but was still below the government's target for 2013.

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Retail sales grew 12.9 percent year-on-year to $306.8 billion (1.89 trillion yuan) in May, just a bit up from the 12.8-percent rise in April, according to the National Bureau of Statistics. The government expected growth of 14.5-percent target for the full year.

The catering sector reported a 9.2 percent year-on-year rise in revenues, up from the 7.9-percent gain recorded in April, while sales of other consumer products increased 13.3 percent. Retail sales went up 12.1 percent last month after adjusted for inflation.

After years of rapid growth generated by investment and exports, China has been looking to shift the focus of its economy to consumption to boost growth. Last year, consumption contributed to about 51.8 percent of China's GDP growth, while fixed-asset investment helped drive around 50.4 percent. Exports took up a negative 2.2 percent.

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