China to Tackle Fraud That Boosts Provincial GDP Numbers

(Bloomberg) -- China will look into improving statistics quality by using the Internet, cloud computing, big data as well as reducing unnecessary layers in data gathering, Yin Zhongqing, vice director of the National People’s Congress’s financial and economic affairs committee, said at briefing in Beijing.

Data fraud by some Chinese local governments resulted in a higher sum of all provincial GDP added together compared to the national one, Yin said, without identifying the provinces. Statistics collected by different ministries vary in some cases because the agencies adopt different standards, the lawmaker said.

Punishment over data collection violations is “too light”, Yin said.

A recent study by researchers at the Chinese University of Hong Kong and the University of Chicago found that China over-reported its economic growth between 2008 and 2016 by an average 1.7 percentage points.

©2019 Bloomberg L.P.