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China misses 'common prosperity' goal as income gap now widest

Urban rich make 6.3 times more than bottom fifth in biggest disparity

Customers dine at a restaurant in Guangzhou. Despite the lifting of COVID restrictions in January, China's service industry is still struggling to get back on its feet.   © Getty Images

BEIJING -- China's income gap has grown to the widest it has ever been since records began, as the average household income of the top 20% in urban areas reaches 6.3 times of the lowest 20%.

Those in the service industries, including restaurants, hotels and entertainment, had lost their jobs or had their salaries cut during President Xi Jinping's "zero COVID" policy over the last three years. Their salaries have yet to catch up since the policy was lifted in January this year.

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