Local government debt within limit

CHINA’S local government debt balance stood at 16.61 trillion yuan (US$2.64 trillion) at the end of March, well within the official limit, according to the Ministry of Finance.

The country’s top legislative body has decided that the upper limit for local government debt this year should be 20.99 trillion yuan.

China issued local government bonds worth 191 billion yuan in March and 219.5 billion yuan in the first three months of this year, all for debt swaps.

China has made bond issuance the sole legal way for local governments to raise debt amid the nation’s efforts to forestall systemic financial crisis, the country’s finance minister said last month.

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