Beijing, China — The People’s Republic of China is to adopt an internationally accepted method to calculate its industrial and agricultural growth starting in 2004, according to the country’s top statistician.
The new method is based on price indices and widely practiced in Western countries, including North America. Li Deshui, director of the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), said at a national statistic meeting that the move was a major reform of the country’s compilation of key economic figures.
The NBS is already using the method on a trial basis to calculate industrial and agricultural figures for 2003.
To date, China has used a calculating method based on fixed price, which was commonplace under its planned economic system. However, as China developed a market economy that is merging into the world, the old method can no longer reflect the real trend of industrial and agricultural growth.
Li said China had reformed its economic statistics system by adopting the basic principles and calculating methods of the United Nations. It also reformed the compilation and release of gross domestic product (GDP) figures this year, adopting a readjustment system of GDP according to international practice.
Li said the country will continue to reform GDP calculation at local levels this year. From Jan. 1, 2004, average per capita GDP will be calculated on the basis of the real number of residents in the region, instead of the number recorded at household registration.
The new reporting method should be of interest to several North American manufacturers — including several companies in the power transmission industry — who are now producing goods in China.