02 Mar '11, 2pm

Worried by widening income gap, China moves to give tax break to poor:

BEIJING - China said Wednesday it would increase the minimum threshold for income tax as Beijing tries to boost domestic consumption and narrow the country's widening wealth gap. Shanghai, the country's financial hub, also said it would raise its minimum wage by 14 percent as authorities try to ease the impact of high inflation on the poor, which has fuelled fears of possible social unrest. China's current threshold for personal income tax is 2,000 yuan (US$304) per month. The country has nine income tax brackets and a maximum tax rate of 45 percent. "In order to further reduce the tax burden on medium- and low-income people, it has become necessary to revise the personal income tax laws and increase the tax-paying threshold," the State Council, or Cabinet, said in a statement. Premier Wen Jiabao said Sunday "resolving unfair income distribution" would be a major objective...

Full article: http://www.channelnewsasia.com/stories/afp_asiapacific_bu...

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