China is in the process of formulating a "happiness index" that includes living conditions, the environment and salary, state television said on Wednesday.

"The Happiness Index will include ordinary people’s feelings towards their own living conditions, such as their income, employment, social welfare and the natural environment," China Central Television cited statistics chief Qiu Xiaohua as saying.

"The more they feel satisfied about their lives, the higher the index will be," he said.

Indices for "innovation" and "social harmony" would also be added, it said.

The report did not make clear if the happiness index would be incorporated into an existing indicator, or stand on its own.

The National Bureau of Statistics will also make changes to some existing indices, such as the consumer price index.

"The present index does not contain housing prices, water prices, fuel prices and some other prices that people are concerned with," the report said.

Many people in China have complained that the CPI does not include the cost of buying a home, which has become one of the biggest expenses for urban Chinese.