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Sharing the benefits of China’s growth by providing opportunities to all


  • Ben Westmore



Living standards in China have greatly improved over the past few decades. Both sustained economic growth and an expansion of the social security system have contributed to a sharp reduction in the number of people in poverty. However, urban-rural inequalities remain large and some of the poorest households are being left behind. Further reforms are needed to ensure that the benefits of future growth are shared and that marginalised groups have the opportunity to actively participate in the economy. In particular, policy settings should be adjusted to increase access to good quality education and healthcare for rural and migrant workers and to improve the portability of social security benefits. Changes to the social assistance system that raise work incentives and protect low-income households in poorer locations are also a priority. New spending measures can be funded by adjustments to the tax system which will, in themselves, benefit inclusiveness. This Working Paper relates to the 2017 OECD Economic Survey of China (

Suggested Citation

  • Ben Westmore, 2017. "Sharing the benefits of China’s growth by providing opportunities to all," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 1409, OECD Publishing.
  • Handle: RePEc:oec:ecoaaa:1409-en
    DOI: 10.1787/639cfdcc-en

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    Cited by:

    1. Westmore, Ben, 2018. "Do government transfers reduce poverty in China? Micro evidence from five regions," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 51(C), pages 59-69.
    2. Junying Lin & Zhonggen Zhang & Lingli Lv, 2019. "The Impact of Program Participation on Rural Household Income: Evidence from China’s Whole Village Poverty Alleviation Program," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 11(6), pages 1-15, March.

    More about this item


    education; health; inclusive growth; pension system; social assistance policies;

    JEL classification:

    • H55 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - Social Security and Public Pensions
    • I14 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Health and Inequality
    • I24 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Education and Inequality
    • I30 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - General
    • I38 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Government Programs; Provision and Effects of Welfare Programs
    • O53 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economywide Country Studies - - - Asia including Middle East

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