BEIJING, March 14 (Reuters) - China's decision to cut its annual economic growth target to 7.5 percent for 2012 was necessary to deliver sustainable growth and create room to make structural reforms to help cushion external pressure on the economy, Premier Wen Jiabao said on Wednesday.
"Due to the European debt crisis and a shrinking external market, there are downward pressures on the Chinese economy. Under such circumstances, we lowered the growth rate target mainly to allow for structural adjustment," Wen told a news conference at the end of the annual meeting of parliament.
Wen said the move was needed "so that China's economy can overcome its unbalanced, unsustainable and uncoordinated problems to step on a road focused on quality, which is also fundamentally positive for the world economy."
Wen announced the target cut to 7.5 percent from 8 percent at the opening of National People's Congress last week. (Reporting by Chris Buckley and Zhou Xin; Editing by Nick Edwards)