China may find it hard to keep inflation under control given the steady rise in wages paid to workers on and off the farm.
To combat a surge in food prices, Beijing has been reining in bank lending and selling down reserves of grain. But rising farm wages is one driver of higher food prices that will be harder to get under control.
China’s leadership, concluding their annual economic-policy conference Sunday, called for "doing everything possible to ensure the security of the supply of major agricultural products."
Beijing hasn’t publicly blamed rising wages for contributing to higher food prices, but agricultural researchers think labor costs deserve attention.
The Wall Street Journal cited Zhang Xiaobo, a scholar with the International Food Policy Research Institute in Washington, as saying, "In the long run, we need to think about the implications of rising wages on food demand and supply."