The Chinese government has announced a package of investment measures worth Rmb 8 trillion, which it hopes will boost the country's flagging economy.
Thanks to a slump in demand from key markets such as Europe and the US, China's exports rose 7.8 percent in the first seven months of this year, while imports rose 6.4 percent, leaving the country in danger of missing its 10 percent target for trade growth this year, reported the UK's Daily Telegraph.
The paper said that in July China's exports had grown at their lowest pace since 2009 and there were reports of factory workers returning to their home provinces for the first time since the onset of the financial crisis.
Chinese prime minister Wen Jaibao said the Rmb 8trillion ($1.26 billion) stimulus package was part of a plan to revitalise the economy in the second half of 2012 and beyond.
According to the Telegraph the economic picture in China is mixed, with a slowdown in its coastal region, where exports are the main focus, while an inland corridor running from Liaoning in the north to Guizhou in the south appears to be booming.
Economists have said that anything less than 7.5 percent growth for the Chinese economy would constitute a "hard landing", which according to Wang Tao, an economist at UBS, "would look like the fourth quarter of 2008 and the first quarter of 2009, when exports collapsed, factories had no orders and migrant workers were laid off by the tens of millions."