East China's Zhejiang province showed an impressive economic performance in the turbulent year of 2020, according to data released by the Zhejiang Provincial Bureau of Statistics.
While the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak in the beginning of 2020 impeded Zhejiang's economic progress last February, the province's economy started to rise again in March. The utilization rate for production capacity among the province's above-designated-size industrial companies reached 81 percent in the third quarter and 82.7 percent in the fourth quarter of the year, bringing the economy to a normal state.
The total industrial value-added for the province's above-designated-size companies stood at 1.67 trillion yuan ($258.92 billion) in 2020, up 5.4 percent from the previous year. Between September and December last year, the corresponding monthly figure's year-on-year growth rate stayed above 10 percent, the fastest growth ever achieved over the past decade. Artificial intelligence, high-tech, equipment, and emerging industries all secured double-digit growth in their annual figure in this regard.
The value-added created by the province's core industries for the digital economy saw a 13 percent year-on-year increase in 2020, making up 10.9 percent of the province's gross domestic product (GDP), up from 10 percent in 2019.
Zhejiang enterprises gradually saw robust market demand at home and abroad as last year progressed. The annual sales-output ratio for those above a designated size reached 97.9 percent, the highest since 2007.
The total profit for the province's above-designated-size industrial companies was 554.5 billion yuan in 2020, up 14.7 percent from the previous year. Their profit as a percentage of operating revenue was 7.1 percent, which was 0.8 percent higher than that in 2019.
Zhejiang's service sector also steadily recovered in 2020. The province received 570 million visits of tourists throughout the year, which was 78.5 percent of the number in 2019. The tourism revenue was 827.5 billion yuan, which was 75.8 percent of the number in 2019. The catering sector has now resumed 90 percent of its business scale seen in 2019.
Economic confidence was best observed in the addition of market entities and corporations. The province's registered number of market entities and corporations grew 10.9 percent and 11.2 percent to 8.032 million and 2.82 million respectively in 2020. The number of private companies grew 11.6 percent to 2.6 million last year, making up 92.3 percent of all companies.
Each one of the 11 Zhejiang cities at or above prefecture-level saw positive GDP growth in 2020. Most of them had a GDP growth rate between 3.3 and 3.6 percent. The per capita annual income ratio of urban residents to rural residents in Zhejiang was 1.96 in 2020, dropping below 2 for the first time since 1993.