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Two-thirds of Beijingers worried over living costs: survey

By Zhang Zihan (Global Times)

08:34, October 26, 2012

Beijingers are increasingly concerned about the cost of living and high medical expenses, according to a new survey, and more than a third have said they feel their life is getting worse.

The bluebook, released by the Beijing Academy of Social Sciences (BASS) Wednesday, details figures related to the living conditions of residents in Beijing.

Despite the findings, Dai Jianzhong, chief editor of the bluebook on Beijing Social Development from BASS admitted that the sample size was rather small.

Among the 101 residents surveyed, 32.6 percent are feeling under more pressure in their daily lives, 73.3 percent are worried about medical fees, and nearly two-thirds of respondents are concerned about the cost of pensions, housing and daily necessities. Around 40 percent feel their lives are worsening, the Beijing News reported.

But the statistics also show 90.1 percent of respondents are satisfied with the city's culture and sporting services, and 83.1 with environmental efforts, the report said.

"It would have been better to have sampled 300 people, but we didn't have enough time," Dai said Thursday, although he did not reveal why time was an issue.

But not all Beijingers feel the survey accurately reflects their concerns.

Software engineer Zhao Huan, 28, said she is not very worried about medical fees.

"It's not a problem as long as you can keep healthy," said Zhao, "and the cost of living is not so difficult, as my company is moving to Shunyi [district] and I'm going to buy a flat there. It's still affordable when it's far enough [from downtown]."

Yao Yuqun, a professor of sociology at Renmin University of China, noted that if a sample size is small, you need a careful selection of individual samples to ensure accuracy.

"But from a statistical perspective, the smallest sample size is 25 people," said Yao.
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