Reform's intention to narrow wealth gap
Updated: 2006-07-19 06:20
The Chinese Government is pushing a reform in the "interest of the broadest
masses" to reduce income gaps and redress social inequity.
In its latest effort to ensure that the country's pay and distribution system
work in a "scientific, rational, fair and just" fashion, the government has
vowed to increase the income of low earners, expand the moderate-income
population and readjust the earnings of the top bracket, the Xinhua News Agency
reported on Monday.
labourer works at a construction site in Nanjing, the capital of east
China's Jiangsu province, July 18, 2006. [Reuters]
The pay and distribution reform is important to building a harmonious
society, Xinhua said in an interview with officials from the ministries of
personnel, finance, civil affairs, and labour and security.
The reform has aroused widespread attention since the Political Bureau of the
Central Committee of the Communist Party of China discussed it in May.
Although the country has made headway in improving living standards and
reforming its social security system, it has yet to tackle thorny problems in
For one thing, the income disparity has been widening between urban and rural
dwellers, among people living in different areas, and among workers in different
industries, Xinhua said.
Urban residents earn on average three times what rural people do. The richest
people, accounting for 10 per cent of city dwellers, possess 45 per cent of
total urban wealth, according to media reports.
To narrow the wealth gap, the country has to deepen reform on income
distribution, unnamed officials quoted by Xinhua said.
On the basis of economic development, the reform will focus more on social
equity and will be designed to ensure all Chinese benefit from the reform,
opening-up and modernization campaign, they said.
It prohibits people from making illegal earnings and strives to narrow the
income disparity, they added.
A major component of the reform is the wage system for