NPC to debate salary reform plan

By Chen Dujuan Source:Global Times Published: 2012-6-16 0:35:03

A plan that aims to boost the earnings of middle-income earners and ensure fairer income distribution will be discussed by the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress (NPC) at the end of June. If approved, the plan is expected to be announced in the second half of this year, a senior NPC official said Thursday.

"The plan proposes adopting international practices that would increase minimum salaries. It also includes tax reforms," He Keng, vice director of the Financial and Economic Committee of the NPC, said at a meeting in Beijing.

He said the plan would also deliver a boost to domestic consumption - a goal set by the State Council to ensure steady economic growth in the second half of this year, the Guangzhou-based Southern Metropolis Daily reported on Friday.

The widening wealth gap is an inevitable side effect of China's rapid development of its market economy, and raising the minimum wage would help promote social equality, Liu Lianzhi, an associate professor at the School of Economics at Xiamen University, told the Global Times on Friday.

"Raising workers' salaries would push enterprises to lessen their reliance on cheap labor and instead focus on higher-skilled staff," Liu said.

The minimum wage needs to increase by an annual average of 13 percent from 2012 to 2015, according to the National Human Rights Action Plan released Monday by the central government.

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