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China will abolish the state monopoly on the production and sale of table salt

China will abolish the state monopoly on the production and sale of table salt, which existed from the 7th century BC. E., reports the Financial Times. This is due to the fact that the government of the country seeks to carry out market reforms and combat bureaucracy.

Soon local salt producers will be able to sell it directly to consumers, including in other provinces, and not just the state-owned China National Salt Industry Corp (China Salt). According to Chinese media, with 2016, salt prices will be liberalized, and with 2017, new licenses will be issued for those wishing to do business.

Compared to the past, the role of the salt sector in China has been greatly reduced. “This is a very small part of the national income. Therefore, there is no reason for so many people to be involved in the bureaucratic chain, ”says Ma Wangfen of Beijing Orient Agribusiness Consultant. Moreover, China Salt, which is both a regulator and a seller of salt to consumers, now relies on government assistance. In 2012, subsidies for it amounted to 720 million yuan ($ 118 million).

But in ancient times the situation was radically different. According to some reports, the monopoly on salt was introduced in China in the 7th century BC. and since then it existed with some interruptions. Also in 119 BC. e. The monopoly on salt was established by the Han dynasty to finance its aggressive expansion. In the III-V centuries. the share of the salt sector accounted for 80-90% of income of some Chinese states, which were formed after the end of the Han Dynasty, writes FT. In 1949, the monopoly passed to the Chinese Communist Party.

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