Japan’s gross domestic product contracted in the last quarter of 2010 due to a drop in consumption, which has resulted in the country losing its position as the world’s second largest economy to China.

According to the latest growth data released by the Japanese Cabinet Office on February 14, GDP dropped by1.1 percent in the fourth quarter of 2010 against the same period of the previous year.

Japan registered a growth rate of 3.9 percent for the whole year to earn 5.474 trillion USD in comparison to China’s 5.879 trillion USD, which means that China is now officially the world’s second largest economy after the United States .

Japan had held the position for 40 years.

Last month, the risk assessment agency Standard & Poor (S&P) lowered its credit rating for Japan to AA- from AA. According to S&P, the Japanese government does not have a clear strategy for reducing its debt which has almost doubled the country’s GDP, the highest level amongst developed countries./.