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Chinese government urged to back off

China’s second-richest man has called on the Chinese government to reduce its role in the economy.

Zong Qinghou, 66, is the chairman of Hangzhou Wahaha Group, a multibillion-dollar food and beverage manufacturer he started with a $USD22,000 loan.

Zong, who is also a member of China’s legislature, told Bloomberg China should cut taxes and allow private enterprise a bigger role in the economy.

“The government has become a monopoly company that invests in everything,” Zong said last Friday.

“The biggest hurdle facing China’s economy now is that the government’s income is too high and the people’s income is too low.”

Zong said the next in line to be the leader of China, Xi Jinping, agreed that "private enterprise is the main direction of economic development".

“I figure when Xi Jinping comes to power, he’ll encourage the development of private enterprise,” Zong said.

Xi is likely to become the next Chinese president in March 2013 when Hu Jintao steps down.

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