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China to cut 100b yuan in companies' benefit costs: cabinet

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China will reduce the costs of companies' benefits for their employees by more than 100 billion yuan, the State Council, or cabinet, said on Wednesday.

[BEIJING] China will reduce the costs of companies' benefits for their employees by more than 100 billion yuan, the State Council, or cabinet, said on Wednesday.

This will "ease companies' burdens, increase their vitality and boost jobs growth and incomes of employees", the State Council said in a statement after a meeting chaired by Premier Li Keqiang.

The amount companies and individuals will have to contribute to old age pensions will be cut to a maximum of 20 per cent of an employee's monthly salary. The monthly contribution to unemployment insurance will be reduced from 2 per cent to between 1 and 1.5 per cent, the council said statement said.

The measures will come into force on May 1.

As China battles an economic slowdown, policy makers have been trying to reduce companies' burdens and fuel consumer spending.

REUTERS

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