CANBERRA, April 23 (Xinhua) -- An Australian scholar said she is optimistic about China's economic recovery amid the COVID-19 pandemic, after the release of China's economic figures.
China's gross domestic product (GDP) stood at 20.65 trillion yuan (about 2.91 trillion U.S. dollars) in the first quarter of 2020 amid the COVID-19 impact, down 6.8 percent year on year, according to data released by China's National Bureau of Statistics.
A breakdown of the data showed the output of the service sector, which accounted for nearly 60 percent of the total GDP, dropped by 5.2 percent, while the primary industry and secondary industry saw a decline of 3.2 percent and 9.6 percent, respectively.
"The decline is much within our expectation," said Shen Kailing, associate professor at the Research School of Economics of the Australian National University.
"China was hit by COVID-19 at the beginning of this year, so the impact started in January and was mostly in Q1," she said, adding that in the second quarter, China brought the epidemic under control at home.
"As the situation in the United States, Europe, Australia and other countries aggravated, the negative factor influencing the Chinese economy in Q2 is mostly weak overseas demand," the scholar said.
"If the epidemic situation in these countries improves, the influence on China's economy this year could perhaps be limited," Shen added.
It is a good idea for China to boost consumption with e-vouchers, Shen said, adding that "it is a way with Chinese features to increase domestic demand for small and medium-sized businesses."
Noting that some industries have been under extreme pressure worldwide, Shen said "governments should find solutions for these industries and companies involved."
Under such circumstances, the less the Chinese economy is affected, the less likely the global economy will sink into recession, she added.
"It is now an opportunity for infrastructure construction," she said, adding that "China could cooperate with other countries on deeper levels and in broader areas, so as to help stabilize the global industrial chain." Enditem