In an op-ed page article "Economic path firm, despite lower growth", the Global Times said GDP figures are so favoured by the media as they are easy to grasp. But China has passed the era of GDP-fixation and Chinese people now harbour more expectations for economic development.
The daily referred a column published last week in the Financial Times that said the Indian economy may outstrip China's this year.
It said despite continued pursuit of wealth, we highly value safety, environmental protection, equal opportunity and explicit rules. With money, there should also be dignity.
Chinese economic and social development has entered an era of multiple targets, which will become more effective. But sometimes the effects are invisible. This makes it harder to measure than what GDP does, the daily said.
"It's different in India. Long overshadowed by China, it is keen to become the best in some aspects. It is in dire need of evidence to show that it is not inferior to China," it said.
Even if the Indian economy does outstrip China's one day, the impact on the Chinese public will be far less than on its own people, since India has been waiting for the outcome for so long, the daily said.
The West seems to be also long expecting the day. Some Western media attach more significance to India's overtaking China than Chinese people do, it noted.
Several Western institutes have predicted that China's economic growth would tumble to about 6.5 percent in 2015 and some even proclaimed that 2015 would be the last year that China would see growth figures above 6 percent.
When China's GDP growth was above 10 percent, many voices expounded that such a high rate would be harmful. However, just as China is committed to economic restructuring and a turn to the "new normal", there appears to be more catcalls and scary predictions for the future. We have to be unswerving in our commitment not to return to the GDP-oriented path, the daily said.
"China's GDP growth is unlikely to always rank top of the global list and we won't modify our set direction in social and economic development," the daily said.
The "new normal" in the Chinese economy doesn't mean stagnation nor recession, but a strategic adjustment toward quality and sustainable development. We have such a widespread capacity to push forward economic and social development and meet people's expectations for a better life, the Global Times said.
"China's growth of 7 percent maintained in the period of economic and social restructuring is no less significant than 10 percent in the past times of extensive development. While the Chinese government is capable of achieving higher growth, its choice of lowering the rate deserves more praise," the daily said.
"China has never been applauded by the West in its development since the end of the Cold War. We have grown used to this. We need to stay firm to achieve our target of deepening reform," it added.