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How much do Chinese people earn?

A question that often comes up is how much Chinese people earn in their jobs, and how that compares to a TEFL salary. An article in the Christian Science Monitor about the Chinese middle class states:

Those jobs earn the couple about $30,000 a year between them – not much by Western standards, but twice the average salary in Beijing and five times the national average in China.

That would put the average Beijing salary at $15,000/year, or ~¥8,100/month. Of course, that figure disregards benefits (such as insurance and pension) and undeclared sources of income. Research has suggested that Chinese have $1.5tn in hidden income, so figures such as the above must be taken with a grain of salt.

The average salary outside of big cities of  ¥3,250/month is almost certainly unrepresentative of the regular wage in any second-tier city, as it has been driven down by the abysmal wage earned in rural areas.

Anyway, just something else to keep in mind when considering a job offer.


4 comments… add one
  • mmm October 16, 2014, 6:06 pm

    2014 Beijing native English teachers make 200 to 500 per hour working for others…1 on 1 is often 300 or more per hour…monthly salaries range 15000 to 50000 rmb plus 5 to 10 thousand per month for rent… etc etc…private Chinese music teachers make 200 to 1000 rmb per hour … most university graduated Beijing couples make a combined monthly salary 15 to 70 thousand … there are few native English speaker teachers … most of the teachers are foreigners from non English countries , hence some of the lower salaries etc etc … most Beijingers of the educated type are flooding the roads with 25 to 100 thousand USD cars so there is lots of business going round

    • Luke October 17, 2014, 5:42 pm

      Thanks for the comment. You might like the post entitled How much do you have to earn to be ‘middle class’ in China? for more about how much Chinese families earn.

      I’d love to see data from Beijing about family earnings. Like you say, some people make quite a lot.

      • mmm October 18, 2014, 7:53 pm

        Howdy Luke … to be upper middle class in Beijing … I think you would need to make more than 700,000 rmb plus per year … I have been here a long time … university teachers make quite variable salaries … our neighbor moved out of his 240 square meter apartment to a villa … he was a professor with lots of side project jobs … this is a quite common phenomenon … I have quite a few educated Beijing friends who make 15 to 70 thousand rmb per month … if it is a couple then you can double that … they are still definitely middle middle class … published salaries have no reality compared to real salaries for Beijing educated folks with a local hukou etc etc …. you can’t buy half a million to a million dollar USD homes on the so called published salaries … not to mention 30 to 100 thousand dollar USD cars that most of my friends buy …. I feel poor compared to some of them … my car is only a lowly cheap Buick 🙂 God Bless, MMM

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