China / Society

Rural-urban income gap narrows

By Yang Wanli ( Updated: 2015-04-22 16:57

The income gap between rural and urban China has narrowed in the past five years, says a report by the Rural Development Institute released on Wednesday.

The annual average per capita disposable income in rural China reached a historical record high of 10,489 yuan ($1,693) in 2014, an increase of 9.2 percent from the previous year, despite the influence of prices.

In urban areas, the average per capita disposable income was 29,381 yuan last year, an increase of 6.8 percent from that in 2013.

"In the past five years, the average net income in rural areas has witnessed faster growth than that in urban areas," said Du Zhixiong, general director of the institute.

"The ratio of average per capita disposable income in urban China to the per capita net income in the cities and towns narrowed down to 2.97 to 1 in 2014. It was the first time that the ratio dropped to below 3:1 since 2002," he said.

Thanks to the income rise, the report also found that rural residents spent more money last year, with per capita consumption of 8,383 yuan, an increase of 10 percent than that in 2013.

In rural areas, about 34 percent of the residents' income was spent on food, wine and tobacco. Transportation and communication costs witnessed the fastest growth of about 16 percent.

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