China sets 2017 growth target of '6.5 percent or higher'

BEIJING (AP) -- China's government has set an economic growth for this year of "around 6.5 percent or higher if possible," down from last year's 6.7 percent expansion but among the fastest in the world.

A government report Sunday says the target, down from last year's goal of 6.5 to 7 percent, is in line with efforts to overhaul industry and create a "moderately prosperous society."

Chinese growth has declined steadily since 2010 as communist leaders try to develop a consumer-driven economy and reduce reliance on trade and investment.

Sunday's report also calls for more job creation, stronger exports and better energy efficiency.

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