China's state auditor said $45 billion worth of projects have been held up because local governments and other agencies have been slow to release funds, limiting the government's efforts to boost a slowing economy.
As many as 193 of 815 projects in 29 provinces inspected in August were facing delays because of funding issues and poor planning, Reuters reported the National Audit Office as saying Thursday.
In one such example of the delay, completion dates of two railways in the southwestern province of Yunnan were pushed from 2014 to 2019, the report said. Similar delays were reported with expressways, water conservation projects and telecommunication company data centers.
The government has already seized 1 trillion yuan ($157.5 billion) from local governments that have failed to spend it. For instance, provinces have invested just 708 million yuan of the 12 billion yuan they are supposed to pour into agricultural water-conservation projects.
China is pumping money into its economy to meet a 7 percent growth target. Aside from possibly triggering unrest at home, a slowing economy could also cap global growth and commodity-supplying countries dependent on China demand are already feeling that.