Caixin OnlineFinance & EconomicsTop Stories Finance Closer Look: How Officials' Obsession with Statistics Drives Number Fudging
06.25.2013 17:45

Closer Look: How Officials' Obsession with Statistics Drives Number Fudging

The careers of local leaders hinge on growth numbers, a situation that has to change for the country to produce reliable figures
By staff reporter Yu Hairong

The falsification of statistics is not surprising news in China. In the most recent case of number fudging, statistics officials in Henglan County, Guangdong Province, vastly overstated local gross industrial output to an extent that was unusual even in a country where economic data is routinely massaged.

The National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) said on June 14 that statistics officials in Henglan inflated the industrial output of 71 companies to 8.5 billion yuan from the actual 2.2 billion yuan. They were also accused of falsifying business data without the companies' knowledge.

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