Need for accurate statistics stressed
( 2003-12-08 23:16) (China Daily)
China's top statistician has pledged to provide good and quality data for the government and the public.
Li Deshui, director of the National Bureau of Statistics, said statistics departments at all levels will strictly follow the Statistics Law to ensure the provision of quality data.
"This is crucial for the long-term development of China's statistics work,'' Li said at a symposium in Beijing Monday marking the 20th anniversary of the promulgation of the country's Statistics Law.
Statistics departments will beef up inspections and punish unlawful activities in statistical work, such as fraud and deception, he said.
"Fraud and deception are not only a serious political issue, but also a kind of corruption,'' Li said.
Since 1985, the government has conducted five nation-wide statistics inspections, during which a number of unlawful activities were discovered, he said.
During the past several years, statistics departments at different levels have discovered more than 10,000 unlawful acts in statistics work every year.
Last year, 18,300 unlawful acts were uncovered.
To let more people know about the Statistics Law, statistics departments at all levels undertook a series of activities to spread information about the Statistics Law, Li said.
The activities included three major nation-wide contests on the content and purpose of Statistics Law, conducted in 1993, 1998 and 2003, he said.
As a result, awareness and observance the Statistics Law improved considerably, he said.
A recent survey by the National Bureau of Statistics suggests that 99.4 per cent of the leaders in companies and institutions surveyed said they were familiar with the Statistics Law, and 82.9 per cent of them said they had studied it.
More than 55 per cent of urban dwellers knew there was a Statistics Law.
He Luli, vice-chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress, said the Statistics Law played an important role in reflecting the real situation of China.
The law also helps government officials make important decisions and helps foreign countries know more about China, she said.
Along with the further development of the country's economy and deepening of the reform, statistics are becoming increasingly important, she said.
"The work of statistics departments is becoming heavier, and the work of statisticians more difficult,'' she said.
The statisticians and government departments must both see to it that the Statistics Law is followed scrupulously to ensure the gathering of quality data.
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