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China creating index to measure ‘new economy’

Updated: Nov 24,2016 5:52 PM     Xinhua

China’s National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) is working on an index that will measure the burgeoning “new economy” in the country, a NBS official said on Nov 24.

The index will gauge the new economy in terms of knowledge, economic vitality, innovation, digitalization, transformation and upgrading, as well as achievements, said Xian Zude, NBS chief statistician, at a forum.

The new economy has seen rapid development in China in recent years, with high-tech industries accelerating, Internet-based business prospering, online retail sales soaring, as well as new products and services springing up, Xian said.

However, the country lacks statistical standards and a unified indicator to reflect the development of the new economy, he said.

In order to better grasp the status of the new economy, since May the NBS has started to collect data on new industries, new forms of commercial activities and new business models, Xian said.

An ongoing nationwide agricultural census also includes information about how farmers use the internet and conduct online transactions, he said.

The sharing economy, such as ride-sharing and room-letting businesses, will be excluded from the new economy index due to difficulty in quantitative measuring, Xian said.

As China’s economy slows on sluggish exports, tepid investment and an industrial glut, authorities have been trying to foster new growth drivers by encouraging innovation and structural upgrading.

China’s GDP grew 6.7 percent year on year in the third quarter, holding steady with the previous two quarters, but still the slowest growth since the global financial crisis.

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