China Premier Li says economy to maintain steady growth


China will maintain steady growth and speed up economic transformation, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang said on Saturday, adding that the world's No. 2 economy would be able to overcome current challenges, official news agency Xinhua reported.

China is trying to rebalance its economy to adapt to slower growth both at home and abroad but policymakers are struggling to contain a range of domestic issues such as surging home prices and rising debt levels.

Li said China's moves to ensure "supply-side structural reform" while appropriately expanding aggregate demand have boosted the domestic economy, and economic restructuring and liberalization have also generated new areas of growth.

Data released last month showed China posted economic growth of 6.7 percent in the third quarter, steady from the previous quarter, as increased government spending and a property boom offset stubbornly weak exports.

China has full confidence in sustaining a "medium-high" growth rate, added Li, speaking on an official visit to Riga.

He said that China has consistently followed proactive fiscal policy and prudent monetary policy, and adopted new ways of macroeconomic regulation, reported Xinhua, while using "market-oriented and rules-based methods" to defuse risk.

Global companies are also set to benefit from opportunities afforded by the "ever more open" Chinese market, Li added.

His comments come amid growing criticism among Western investors of restricted access to the Chinese market.

(Reporting by Dominique Patton; Editing by Simon Cameron-Moore)