Jan 12, 2015 12:34 PM

China Turning Gray over Pension Reform Stress

(Beijing) – About 8,000 teachers in the northeastern city of Zhaodong stayed home for three days in November to protest an experimental pension scheme they called tantamount to a pay cut.

The teachers claimed they'd been illegally forced to participate in the scheme, and demanded the local government refund their pension contributions.

The dispute in Zhaodong, an agricultural hub in Heilongjiang Province, is a snapshot of a nationwide debate over the future of China's two-tier pension system. Analysts say Zhaodong's experiment failed because it reinforced the wide gap separating pension payment and benefit outlays for teachers and local civil servants.

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