From the Financial Express (link)
Amid China’s efforts to bridge the widening chasm between the rich and poor, the government has thrown agriculture tax into the dustbin of history, rescinding the 2,600-year-long practice which could improve the lot of some 800 million peasants.
“We will completely rescind the agricultural tax throughout the country, throwing it into the ‘dustbin of history’ after a history of 2,600 years in China,” Chinese finance minister Jin Renqing said. The reform of rural taxes and fees will reduce the financial burden of 800 million rural residents by about $15.63 billion a year, he said.
Chinese premier Wen Jiabao, in the government’s work report presented to Parliament, noted that in order to build a new socialist countryside, the country must comprehensively carry out overall rural reform. China will completely rescind agricultural tax in 2006, he said.