JULIA Gillard's office wants answers following suggestions that taxpayer-funded translators used the internet to prepare the Chinese version of the Prime Minister's Asian white paper.
One critic said it looked like the job was done using the Google Translate website.
Ms Gillard released the Australia in the Asian Century paper last month, urging schools and universities to embrace
Asian language lessons.
But the Chinese (simplified) version of the paper contained broken sentences, grammar and syntax
errors, inappropriate vocabulary and incomprehensible
expressions, leading many to question how it was prepared.
Some English words were translated without preserving the original meaning, regarded as an amateur mistake.
In the translation of the executive summary, the last line referring to a "highly skilled workforce" was translated into a word meaning "an army of labour".
比如在“执行摘要” 部分中，最后一行原句中的 “高度专业化的劳动力” 被翻译成 “一群劳动大军”；
A reference to "world-beating actions" became "only one in the world". And on page 18, a reference to pathways was translated to "leading peak", but the translation also referred to a famous mountain in Hunan province.
原文提到的 “震动世界的举措” 被译为“全世界唯一的”。在第18页一句关于“途径”的句子被译为了“龙头峰”，而在中文里，龙头峰是湖南省一座名山的名字。
One Chinese national studying in Australia, who asked not to be named, told The Sunday Telegraph: "It's kind of unbelievable. I was ready to cry when I read it. It just looked like they asked some random uni student to translate.
"It is reasonable to suspect that the person who translated this white paper relied heavily on Google Translate, not their Asian language skills."
The Confucius Institute at the University of Western Australia was more diplomatic
. "Upon a quick review of the Chinese version, it was found to be readable and understandable, although there was room for improvement, especially in the choice of word/terms," a spokesman said.
"In general, it is understandable. 'Simplified' refers to the version of Chinese characters versus traditional characters."
A spokeswoman for the Prime Minister said the translation was done by a service accredited by the National Accreditation Authority for Translators and Interpreters.
"We have asked the translator to review the examples provided. If there are issues with any of the translations they will be fixed," the spokeswoman said.