During the annual Two Sessions, the government reports to the public how much tax it took in and which areas they spent most of the money on last year. It also tells how much it will set aside for the budget and what measures it will take to boost the city's economic and social development this year.
The government is responsible for mapping out four types of budgets — the general public budget, the government fund budget, the state asset budget and the social insurance fund budget.
Areas more related to our daily lives, such as education, employment, science and technology, and public health, belong to the general public budget.
Last year, the revenue of the general public budget reached 710.81 billion yuan, up 7 percent from last year due to:
Do you know which areas Shanghai spent most of the budget on? Last year, the city govenment spent the most in urban and rural communities, followed by social insurance and employment, and education. Let's take a look at the detailed breakdown.
This year, the revenue of the general public budget is expected to reach 746.5 billion yuan, up 5% from that of 2018, but also a 2-percentage-point drop in the growth rate. This is due to the following reasons:
Excluding the adjustment fund, tax rebate from the central government and the debt revenue.
In this section, our reporters interviewed some pedestrians on Shanghai's streets and asked what issues they are concerned most about regarding the city. Let's see what they said.
Some people may sort out recyclables and kitchen waste at home, but when they throw out garbage on the street, they seem to care less about classification as I often see people throw garbage into the wrong bins. I think lawmakers should try harder to promote awareness among the public around garbage sorting, not only at home, but at work, and on the street as well.
The medium-capacity bus 71 has brought quite a lot of convenience through its dedicated lane, but the lane may also somehow impact on the rest of the traffic. I'm thinking since Yan'an Road is a main trunk road of the city, there may be more possibilities to further alleviate traffic jams while making bus 71 more efficient.
If the majority of people lack the awareness and public spirit to sort their garbage, I doubt punishing them will make a difference. And we can't simply copy the way that Japan or some European countries deal with garbage sorting for the same reason. I think it is perhaps more important to educate the public on the importance of garbage sorting before we actually devote greater effort to the policies on garbage sorting itself.
I drink bubble tea almost every day and I sometimes see on the news that bubble tea is not safe. I also have takeaways all the time and people also say that is unsanitary. I do believe the authorities are working hard to crack down on illegal or unqualified food providers, but food poisoning is still a big problem. Maybe it is a hard task to work out once and for all, so perhaps we can have higher requirements for market access. The market watchdogs can pay a visit to restaurants more frequently.
I've been in Shanghai for seven years and it is getting easier to get around the city. I take the Metro and bus all the time since I can get anywhere in the city within an hour. Sometimes it's a bit jammed in the Metro station with too many people jostling with each other, but other than that, the public transportation here is so much better than Vladivostok.
Shanghai could reinstate outdoor food markets at night, and improve public transport and taxis. To ensure the quality and sanitary standards of open-air food markets, the government should roll out standards, fund the construction of infrastructure and assess food businesses at the markets annually.
It's time to upgrade the cruise tour services on the Huangpu River because they've become "mediocre." The shortcomings of the cruise services include a short supply of day tours, unsatisfactory food and expensive tickets. The audio guide service for foreign tourists should also be improved.
Supportive policies and measures should be offered for small and medium-sized enterprises. Suggestions include reasonably adjusting the tax classification of individual businesses and partnerships so that they can enjoy preferential tax policies for small and micro enterprises. Commercial banks should set up inclusive financial departments to offer finance services suitable for SMEs, and increase their availability of credit.