Guangzhou, an economically leading city in south China, has raised the minimum level of personal taxable income to 1,600 yuan (US$193) from former 1,260 yuan (US$152) beginning Jan. 1 this year.
"From this February, when tax payers come to declare income for January, they could enjoy the new tax policy," said an official with the local financial department.
The 1,260 yuan taxable income standard includes two parts. One is the 800 yuan taxable salary which was set by the central government in 1994. The other part is the subsidiaries and pensions which are exempt of tax.
With the rapid economic development and improving living standards over the last few years, the call for raising the minimum level of taxable income has been louder, but the central government has been cautious about that.
Some experts said that with varying economic development levels, a unified tax standard is not enough. "Guangzhou's action is tally with the general direction of China's tax reform," said Yang Weihua, member of the Chinese Taxation Society and professor with the Zhongshan University.
In Beijing, the minimum level for taxable income has been raised to 1,200 yuan (US$149) from former 1,000 yuan (US$120). In east China's Jiangsu Province, the level was raised to 1,200 yuan from 1,000 yuan from January this year.
(Xinhua News Agency January 26, 2004)