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On the implication of the "Unified Household Registration System"
2014/08/27

Q2: ‘‘Opinions on Further Promoting the Reform of the Household Registration System“ spoke of “Establishing a Unified Household Registration System”. What are the practical implications of this change?

A2: The abolition of the division in registrations between “rural households” and “urban households” represents a major social progress. The new unified system has the first implication of ending decades-long discrimination which has marked Chinese children from birth as either “country kids” or “city kids”. Henceforth, individuals will not be distinguished based on the registration category of their household as either “rural” or “urban”, but based on occupation (agriculture or otherwise).

Beyond the obvious reforms to the land and population registration systems, the move also has significant implications for education, healthcare, family planning, employment, social benefits and housing. The reforms will allow equal access of urban and rural dwellers to public services and social welfare and ensure the gradual narrowing of the income gap between formerly “urban” and “rural” households. They will also ensure the rights of land-owners to the attribution of their land for agricultural production or construction.

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