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China Economic Data Questioned as Electricity Use Slows

The figures that go into China’s gross domestic product are “man-made” and “for reference only,” Li Keqiang, then a regional Communist Party head, said in 2007.

The comments by Li, now a vice premier who’s expected to become premier next spring, were revealed in a diplomatic cable published by WikiLeaks in late 2010. Li’s remarks are especially relevant as China announced today that the economy expanded 7.6 percent last quarter from a year earlier, the slowest pace in three years.