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China said on Friday international credit rating agency S&P Global Ratings "made a wrong decision" in downgrading China's credit rating, saying the firm neglected the characteristics of the country's financing structure and underestimated the country's economic potential.

The firm's concerns over problems like China's hyper-fast credit growth are not rare for the current stage of its economic development, which, however, neglect the characteristics of the country's financing structure as well as the wealth accumulation and material basis for government expenses, the Ministry of Finance (MOF) said in a statement.

Regrettably, S&P's decision is a result of international rating agencies' conventional thinking and misinterpretation of China's economy based on developed countries' experience, the MOF said, noting this misinterpretation also reflects their ignorance of China's sound economic fundamentals and development potential.

The MOF's reaction comes after S&P Global Ratings lowered China's long-term sovereign credit ratings by one notch on Thursday to A+ from AA-, the first time since 1999, out of concerns of increasing economic and financial risks from rising debt. The ratings outlook is stable, it said.

"The downgrade reflects our assessment that a prolonged period of strong credit growth has increased China's economic and financial risks," S&P said in a statement released on Thursday.

Given China's high saving rate backing its indirect financing-oriented financial system and banking loans' leading role in social funding, the nation is completely capable of maintaining a stable financial system if the regulators effectively contain credit risks by prudent lending and tightening regulation, the MOF said.

China has adhered to a stable monetary policy in recent years, and hasn't flooded its economy with strong stimulus measures, the MOF continued. The country's currency growth is gradually declining. In August, M2, a broad measure of money supply that covers cash in circulation and all deposits, rose 8.9 percent from a year earlier, far below the average growth rate since the 2008 global financial crisis.

Meanwhile, the central government has made efforts to contain financial risks, regulate wealth management business and crackdown on shadow banking, which has helped guarantee the stability of the domestic financial system and sustainability in serving the real economy, according to the MOF.S&P's forecast of China's economic growth will remain strong at close to 5.8 percent or more annually through at least 2020, corresponding to per capita real GDP growth of above 5.4 percent each year. But the firm expects credit growth in China to outpace that of nominal GDP over much of this period.

The MOF said China's economy has maintained a trend of stability, while also showing signs of improvement. According to the MOF statement, China saw GDP growth of 6.9 percent in the first six months of this year, higher than the goal that had been set by the government. Also, China has had a medium to high economic growth rate for eight quarters in a row. The MOF also said that driven by China's improving economic trend, the country's fiscal revenue grew by 9.8 percent on a yearly basis in the first eight months of this year, up from 6 percent growth over the same period last year. Meanwhile, China's fiscal expenditure also surged by 13.1 percent year-on-year. The MOF said in the statement that as China's supply-side reforms proceed, economic structures improve and emerging industries flourish, China will continue to maintain relatively strong economic resilience.

S&P also downgraded the credit ratings of the country's policy banks, including China Development Bank, Agricultural Development Bank of China and the Export-Import Bank of China on Thursday.