Chinese economy slumps to weakest growth in 25 years

Growth in the fourth quarter was 6.8 percent, the slowest quarterly GDP growth since 2009 recession.

Chinese economy recorded the weakest growth rate in 25 years last year, weighed down by sluggish exports, continued weakness in the manufacturing sector, high debt levels and a drop in investment.

The world's second largest economy expanded 6.9 percent in 2015, data showed on Tuesday. Growth in the fourth quarter was 6.8 percent, which was the slowest quarterly GDP growth since the global recession in 2009.

The cooling of Chinese growth has put pressure on Beijing to ramp up fiscal spending, cut interest rates and beef up domestic consumption.

Data showing a significant slowdown in the world's primary growth engine came on the heels of a sustained fall in Chinese markets and a weakening of the Yuan.

Markets had priced in a 6.9 percent growth, which was analysts' consensus, and markets were spared. Chinese stock markets have so far fallen close to 20 percent in the new year.

Benchmark Shanghai Composite Index rose 3.25 percent despite the gloomy GDP numbers, buoyed by expectations of a rate cut that will have a rub off effect on the battered stocks.

Following the weak Chinese data the International Monetary Fund trimmed its growth projection for China this year to 6.3 percent. IMF also cut its global growth forecast.

However, according to analysts polled by Reuters the Chinese economy will expand 6.5 per cent this year.

According to analysts the latest data from China's statistics bureau confirmed fears that the economy's downturn will accelerate in the coming years, signalling a bleak global outlook.

"While headline growth looks fine, the breakdown of the figures points to overall weakness in the economy ... All in all, we believe that China will experience a 'bumpy landing' in the coming year," Zhou Hao, senior emerging markets economist for Asia at Commerzbank Singapore, told Reuters.