Audits of 52 local governments’ debts have found errors in data reporting and holes in debt relief plans, said China’s National Audit Office (NAO) on Wednesday, reported Caixin.
In a report to national legislators, the NAO said a 2018 inspection of local budget implementation found 31 local authorities either inflating or deflating debt totals, while 11 localities lacked proper plans to deal with outstanding debts, totaling RMB 17 billion ($2.47 billion). The inspection covered 18 provincial governments, 17 cities and 17 counties.
The central government has ordered local officials to work out plans to dispose of their borrowings from before July 2017 in five to 10 years — through debt swaps or restructuring measures — as part of the national campaign to defuse debt risks.
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