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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Accuracy and reliability of China's energy statistics

  • Author(s): Sinton, Jonathan E.
  • et al.

Many observers have raised doubts about the accuracy and reliability of China's energy statistics, which show an unprecedented decline in recent years, while reported economic growth has remained strong. This paper explores the internal consistency of China's energy statistics from 1990 to 2000, coverage and reporting issues, and the state of the statistical reporting system. Available information suggests that, while energy statistics were probably relatively good in the early 1990s, their quality has declined since the mid-1990s. China's energy statistics should be treated as a starting point for analysis, and explicit judgments regarding ranges of uncertainty should accompany any conclusions.

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