Opinion / Op-Ed Contributors

Reducing inequality a priority

By Colin Speakman (China Daily) Updated: 2013-11-11 07:31

At the Third Plenary Session of the 18th Communist Party of China Central Committee, how to reduce income inequality will be a key issue.

Reducing inequality a priority

When he became China's top leader, Xi Jinping made helping all Chinese people to achieve modest prosperity and the rejuvenation of the nation the goals for his time at the helm. But reducing the huge income gap is a daunting task, as in recent years there has been no noticeable progress in reducing China's high Gini coefficient of 0.474, which indicates a high degree of inequality, and it is at a level above that in many long-established capitalist economies, where successful risk-taking earns rewards. In the developed countries some highly successful, risk-taking entrepreneurs, such as Bill Gates, Steve Jobs and Richard Branson, command respect for their wealth rather than jealousy, and they are seen as role models inspiring others.

However, the wealth of these entrepreneurs has been acquired through their own efforts and they have often made innovative contributions to people's lives. They also give back through charitable work and present a lifestyle that is not too ostentatious and still seems in touch with ordinary folks. And, they all fly the flag for their country.

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