Tibet new GDP champion among regions

An expert said that Southwest China's Tibet Autonomous Region might lead the nation's GDP growth list for some time to come now that it has surpassed Southwest China's Chongqing Municipality, a former growth champion.
Tibet became the fastest-growing locality in China in the first quarter among the provincial-level regions that have announced their economic figures, according to the China Economic Weekly on Monday.
The GDP data of 31 provincial-level localities showed that  Tibet topped the GDP growth list with expansion of 11 percent, 4.1 percentage points higher than the national average. Northeast China's Liaoning Province ranked last with a growth rate of 2.4 percent.
Previously, Chongqing was the leader in GDP growth for 12 consecutive quarters.
On April 17, the National Bureau of Statistics announced a higher-than-expected national growth rate of 6.9 percent year-on-year in the first quarter of 2017.
Chongqing and Southwest China's Guizhou Province ranked second and third in the local list, with GDP growth rates of 10.5 percent and 10.2 percent, respectively.  
Among the top 10 fastest-growing provincial-level localities, six are in the western part of the country and two in Central China.
Tibet's GDP growth rate has been moving upward rapidly. In the first quarter of 2016, Tibet and Chongqing led the nation with GDP growth rates of 10.7 percent. 
But while Tibet's growth further accelerated during this year's first quarter, that of Chongqing slowed down a notch to 10.5 percent. 
Tian Yun, director of the research center at the China Society of Macroeconomics, said that Tibet's GDP base is quite low, and the fact that it had overtaken Chongqing might be a watershed event, as the latter would inevitably face slower growth after a very long period of double-digit expansion from a relatively large base. 
"What is noteworthy, though, is that the entire region of Southwest China is now fast developing, and that means a positive rebalancing in the nation's economic power," Tian told the Global Times on Tuesday.
It also means that the central government's policy to develop the western part of the country is working, noted Tian.
During the first quarter, 22 localities surpassed the national average growth rate of 6.9 percent, the statistics showed.