A deputy to the National People’s Congress (NPC) recently conducted a survey in a food market in Beijing and discovered that 10 yuan ($1.58) can buy 21 eggs, 5 cucumbers, 63 kumquats, 7 apples, 5 subway tickets or 7 tomatoes at the current price level.
A reporter conducted a similar survey in Nanjing food markets on March 12 and found that 10 yuan can buy 3.3 jin (1.65 kg) of vegetables, 1.8 jin of lettuce, 3 bags of pure milk or 3 Fuji apples. Many residents in Nanjing have the same feeling that the purchasing power of Renminbi is declining.
Master Cui, who has been selling vegetables for 4 years, said that the price of vegetables has increased dramatically in recent years. Taking green vegetables for example, it cost 1-2 yuan to buy green vegetables in the past while the current price is 3 yuan or even higher during holidays.
“Expenses on daily meals usually cost more than 2,000 yuan per month for a family of three members”, said Zhong Lijing, a boss of a private company. Although earning a monthly salary of over ten thousand yuan, Zhong Lijing has to eke out every penny of her money. Every day she goes shopping at the “on sale vegetable stall” in a super market at noon.
Zhao Jidong from the Jiangsu Investigation Group of State Statistics Bureau said that the 1/2 decline or more of the purchasing power of Renminbi is mainly because of the fastest increase of food price which takes up the largest share in the daily expenses of Jiangsu residents.
“The decline of RMB purchasing power resulted in the unwillingness to consume. Such shrink of domestic demand has a huge impact on economic growth rate and employment rate”, said Xu Chongzheng, an economics professor at the Nanjing Normal University who holds that the government should explore the root causes of the decline of RMB purchasing power and vigorously increase the property income of ordinary people.