China Announces GDP Growth Rate of 6.7 Percent
On January 20, China officially released its economic data for 2016, announcing that its GDP grew at 6.7 percent, placing China in the top tier of global growth.
However, even more so than in previous years, observers are skeptical of these official figures. This latest quarterly figure is the third consecutive dataset in 2016 concluding that China’s growth rate has been exactly 6.7 percent. Though possible, such a figure is statistically very unlikely. The reported data continues a longstanding run of Chinese official figures reporting precisely at the goal set by the Communist Party. For 2016, the objective was between 6.5 percent and 7 percent. Furthermore, other factors which generally correlate with economic growth, such as steel consumption for construction projects and electricity usage, have grown at a more modest rate of 4 percent for much of this time.
All of these queries raise doubts about the validity of China’s GDP figures, despite China’s best efforts to label the data as authentic.