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The second largest economy in the world is struggling to narrow the income gap between rich and poor.
New official figures released on Monday said per capita urban disposable income expanded 7 per cent in real terms to 26,955 yuan in 2013, while the rural figure rose 9.3 per cent in real terms to 8,896 yuan.
With China’s poverty line drawn at 2,300 yuan of annual net income last year, a rural population of 82.49 million were officially poor, a fall of 16.5 million compared to 2012.
The National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) announced on Monday that rural and urban data were collected separately before 2013.
“Such data helped policy making, but did not show the whole income landscape across the whole nation,” Wang Pingping, in charge of NBS household surveys said.
China alongwith its BRICS member nations like Brazil, India and South Africa have witnessed growing disparities not just between wealthy cities and impoverished rural countryside but also in pockets of urban poverty.
China’s Gini coefficient, a measure of income disparity, stood at 0.474 in 2012, down from 0.477 in 2011 and from a peak of 0.491 in 2008, NBS officials said earlier in January.
“This curve of Gini coefficient demonstrates the urgency for our country to speed up reform of the income distribution system to narrow the poor-rich gap,” Ma Jiantang head of the National Bureau of Statistics had said after releasing the figures.
TBP and Agencies