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City Dwellers See Improvement in Their Lives

Chinese city dwellers are heading towards a prosperous life, a recent survey has revealed.

The annual survey - China Marketing Research and Media Study in 2000 - talked to 50,000 citizens in 20 major cities.

It was carried out by the Beijing-based consulting company Sinomonitor International and the British Marketing Research Bureau.

Propelled by the growing economy, per capita average monthly income in cities such as Shanghai, Guangzhou and Chengdu has risen to 996 yuan (US$120), a 68 yuan (US$8.2) increase from last year.

The fact that people no longer get homes from the government and the rapid development of the real estate industry is encouraging more and more people to purchase their own homes.

About 59 percent of those interviewed said they have already bought houses, up 10 percent from the previous year, while 70 percent of the remaining citizens spoken to said they will buy a home within three years.

However, the number of people intending to buy a car has gone down by 6 percent from last year.

This is because people think car prices will be lower after China's entry into the World Trade Organization.

Spurred on by reducing interest rates and the beginning of interest tax last year, citizens are now more inclined to invest in stocks and shares. The survey estimates that varied types of investment such as collecting stamps and antiques will attract more investors in the near future.

(China Daily 12/11/2000)

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