Why would a heavily indebted economy subject to an increasing repressive government slow down? From Daniel Lacalle at dlacalle.com:
The most recent macroeconomic figures show that the Chinese slowdown is much more severe than expected and not only attributable to the covid-19 lockdowns.
The lockdowns have an enormous impact. 26 of 31 China mainland provinces have rising covid cases and the fear of a Shanghai-style lockdown is enormous. The information coming from Shanghai proves that these drastic lockdowns create an enormous damage to the population. Millions of citizens without food or medicine and rising suicides have shown that the infamous “zero covid” policy often disguises mass population control and repression.
It is easy to use the covid-19 lockdowns as the reason for the weakening of the Chinese economy but that would be a gross simplification. The problem is deeper.
China is going through a severe slowdown caused by the burst of the enormous real estate bubble and the crackdown on the private sector, which has led to a cut in investment growth.