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Women enjoy longer, better life in Tianjin
( 2003-12-04 10:33) (Xinhua)

The life expectancy of women in Tianjin, a coastal city 120 kilometers east of the nation's capital Beijing, has risen to 77.63 years.

A recent grading by the Women and Children Work Committee of the Tianjin Municipal Government shows the life expectancy of women in Tianjin is nearing that of some developed countries including Britain and the United States.

Analysts here have attributed the longer life expectancy to the city's rapid economic, cultural and human development, and in particular, its growing respect for women, who account for 49.5 percent of its 10 million-strong population.

While about 40 percent of the women in Tianjin are working, the income ratio between men and women is around 10"The grading has also found that 90 percent of women in Tianjin are literate, and 100 percent of its school age girls attended primary and junior high schools.

Meanwhile, women in Tianjin were playing an active role in the political arena, said Hou Suning, an official with the municipal government in charge of women and children's work.

Women make up 20.1 percent of lawmakers in Tianjin Municipal People's Congress, and 25.2 percent of advisers at the Municipal Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference.

"In the United States, women make up 13 and 14 percent respectively of memberships in the Senate and House of Representatives," Hou said.

The Tianjin municipal government used United Nations standards to make the calculation, and rated the life of its women citizens as "medium development", according to Hou.

China's industrial and business hub Shanghai has also ranked itself recently as "medium development" in terms of women's development, citing their life expectancy of 81.65 years, literacy rate of 90 percent, and employment rate of 42 percent.

The United Nations Development Program (UNDP) has been publishing an annual human development index (HDI) since 1990, to rank countries and regions by a composite measure of life expectancy, education and income per person.

According to the UNDP Human Development Report 2003, China's HDI values 0.721 (on a scale from 0 to 1), classified as medium human development and ranking 104th out of 175 countries and regions.

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