Lottery tickets sales in China totaled 111.5 billion yuan (US$18.1 billion) in the first four months of 2014, marking an increase of 14.3 percent over the same period last year, Tencent finance portal reported Wednesday.
Welfare lotteries accounted for 64.04 billion yuan, with their sales up 14.6 percent over the year-earlier period, while sports lottery sales grew 13.9 percent to 47.5 billion yuan, the report said, citing data released by the finance ministry.
China’s lottery sales revenue growth has surpassed the nation’s overall economic expansion rate for five consecutive years. Some experts believe such revenues could reach 470 billion yuan by 2015, contributing 0.88 percent to the gross domestic product (GDP), the report said.
Welfare lottery sales, of which 50 percent go to the pockets of local governments, are used to fund welfare activities such as poverty reduction and subsidies to the disabled and the elderly.
Lottery sales have helped local governments diversity their income resources and reduce the overall fiscal risks, the report noted.
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