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    China’s public budget expenditure hits record high

    Updated: Jan 23,2019 8:30 PM     Xinhua

    BEIJING — China’s public budget expenditure reached a record high while revenue grew steadily, official data showed on Jan 23.

    Public budget expenditure totaled 22.09 trillion yuan ($3.27 trillion) last year, up 8.7 percent year-on-year, while revenue rose 6.2 percent year-on-year to reach 18.34 trillion yuan, according to the Ministry of Finance (MOF).

    Education, social security and employment took the lion’s share of public budget spending, while spending on debt interest payment and science and technology grew the fastest.

    Tax revenue stood at 15.64 trillion yuan, up 8.3 percent year-on-year.

    China’s long-term steady economic growth will ensure stable fiscal revenue, although growth might slow down due to expected larger scale of tax and fee cutting, said Li Dawei, a senior MOF official.

    Xu Guoqiao, another MOF official, said that tax reduction and fee cutting had played a significant role in optimizing the business environment, enhancing the vitality of market entities and easing corporate tax burdens.

    He said that in 2019 China would continue to advance value-added tax reform and make substantial tax cuts, and that the implementation of revised individual income tax law was expected to reduce the tax load of Chinese residents.

    The MOF is also collaborating with other departments to study a comprehensive plan to slash social insurance fee rates and relieve the social insurance payment burden of firms.