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When much of the world went through a major recession in 2008-2009, China, through enormous government spending efforts, managed to weather the storm and buoy the global economy.

With the world tottering “perilously close” to a global recession on the back of Russia’s war in Ukraine and three years of the COVID-19 pandemic, a repeat of a Chinese-led recovery seems less likely.

The country’s economy expanded by only 3 percent in 2022. Growth is projected to remain slow in the early quarters of 2023 before rebounding strongly in the second half of the year, according to a survey of 37 economists conducted by Nikkei in December. The average GDP growth figure put forth by the group was 4.7 percent, with the vast majority of predictions falling between 4.0 and 5.9 percent.

Yet even the most optimistic recovery scenario for China does not portend a return to the soaring growth rates that the country was used to for decades. China’s GDP has grown at an average of nearly 10 percent annually since Beijing embarked on economic reforms in 1978.

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