The Fifth Plenary Session of the 16th Central Committee of the Communist Party of China (CPC) is scheduled to open in Beijing on Saturday.
The four-day event, which will include discussions on national economic and social development in the next five years, is expected to focus on narrowing the income gap between the rich and the poor, observers said.
Tang Min, chief economist of the Asian Development Bank's China Office was quoted by Xinhua News Agency as saying on Friday that the event is a crucial moment as China tries to narrow the gap between rich and poor, urban and rural.
Lu Zhongyuan, a researcher at the State Council’s Development Research Centre told Xinhua that in the next five years, the central government might adjust income distribution and fiscal expenditure structure to help the poor.
More economic input will go into agriculture to give support and protection for farmers and expenditure in the agricultural sector will increase more than in any other sector, Lu predicted.
The average income of the rich was 2.5 times that of the poor in 1995, while in 2003 that number had grown to 3.23, said Hu Angang, an economic professor at the Beijing-based Tsinghua University, in a research report.
(Xinhua News Agency October 8, 2005)