China's GDP hits record growth

Quickening sharply from last year's slump, China's economic recovery in the first quarter was propelled by stronger demand at home and abroad.

As well as continued government support for smaller firms.

Gross domestic product jumped 18.3% in the first quarter from a year earlier, slightly undershooting expectations.

But still the fastest growth since quarterly records began in 1992.

The brisk expansion is expected to ease off later this year as the government turns its attention to reining in financial risks in overheating parts of the economy.

Aided by strict virus containment measures and emergency relief for businesses, the economy has gathered momentum since the first three months of 2020

when an outbreak of the virus in the central city of Wuhan rapidly became a crippling pandemic.

China's rebound has been led by exports as factories raced to fill overseas orders.

More recently it's seen a steady pickup in consumption as shoppers returned to restaurants, malls and car dealerships.

Retail sales increased 34.2% year-on-year in March.

China is remaining cautious though and says that while economy started 2021 on a firm footing, the services sector and smaller firms still faced challenges.

while consumer inflation was likely to remain moderate