Chinese central gov’t department publishes expenditure details

The China Earthquake Administration on Thursday published details on its expenditures in 2011, marking the beginning of a new round of such disclosures for central government departments.

It spent nearly 6.4 million yuan (1.01 million U.S. dollars) on overseas travel, 35.6 million yuan on vehicles and 14 million yuan on official receptions, according to figures published on the administration’s official website.

Combined spending on overseas travels, vehicles and receptions was 56 million yuan, less than the 57.7 million yuan budgeted for the expenses.

The administration discarded 23 vehicles last year and bought 12 new ones at a cost of 2.95 million yuan. The administration’s 47 departments kept a total of 1,082 public vehicles, with operating costs totaling 32.68 million yuan.

The administration also paid for 425 overseas trips last year.

Central government departments are scheduled to publish their expenditures for 2011 starting from July 19, said a senior official with the Ministry of Finance.

Government expenditures on overseas travel, vehicles and official receptions have been in the public eye in recent years, as many people believe that government departments spend too frivolously on these items.

More than 90 central government departments publicized their 2010 and 2011 spending on overseas travel, receptions and vehicles after an order issued following an executive meeting of the State Council in May last year.

Xinhua