Residents' income grows 7% annually since 1978
Updated: 2008-11-01 09:34
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Since China initiated its reform and opening-up policy, the per capita income of rural residents grew 7.1 percent, while the disposable income of urban residents rose 7.2 percent, according to the latest figures of the country's National Bureau of Statistics.

This photograph taken a year ago shows the craze among people in Nanjing to buy a Louis Vuitton. [China Daily]
Between 1978 and 2007, the per capita income of rural residents increased from 133.6 yuan ($19.6) to 4140.4 yuan ($606.2), with an average annual growth of 7.1 percent. The per capita income of urban residents rose from 343.4 yuan ($50.3) to 13,785.8 yuan ($2018.4), an average annual growth of 7.2%.
Statistics show that the sources of revenue have also diversified. Traditionally, the majority of a Chinese farmer's income is generated by his farmland and livestock. This figure has more than doubled since the adoption of the reform and opening-up policy. Compared to 18 percent back in 1985, 38.6 percent of a farmer's total earnings were generated by his or her wages in 2007.
Over the past three decades, there has been a substantial increase in urban residents' income. Compared to 1990, incomes increased by 6.3 percent in 2007, while the amount citizens earned by renting out their property has jumped from 1.0 percent to 2.3 percent.
Statistics show that the per capita property income of urban Chinese residents is 348.5 yuan ($51.0), 21.3 times higher than that in 1990.
China to be Considered Well-off Society in 2020
The National Bureau of Statistics announced Friday that China will be considered a moderately well-off society by 2020, if development trends since the year 2000 continue.
The estimation was made taking into account progress in the fields of economy, social harmony, quality of life, democracy and law enforcement, culture and education, as well as resources and the environment.
The Chinese economy has grown steadily with a 15.2-point rise being recorded in the development index in 2007 compared to that of 2000. GDP increased by 9.5 percent annually while the expenses for research and development rose to 1.49 percent of the GDP in 2007, compared to 0.9 percent in 2000.
Disparity in regional economic development narrowed down to 62.6% in 2007 from 68.7% in 2000. The coverage of endowment insurance and social medical insurance expanded from 13.3% to 47.6 % of the total population.
A remarkable improvement in people's quality of life was also recorded. The per capita disposable income for residents in cities and towns in 2007 was double the figure in 2000. In rural areas, per capita income reached 4,140.4 yuan, again nearly doubling the statistics in 2000.
The Chinese government provides rural students with free textbooks during their tuition-free compulsory education.
In addition, the government has placed great emphasis on protection of resources and the environment. The use of coal has dropped between 2005 and 2007. The amount of coal consumed to generate a GDP of 10,000 yuan in 2007 was 1.36 tons, while it was 1.43 tons in 2005.