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Major work in agriculture for 2017: Promoting steady development of agriculture and continued increases in rural incomes

DATE:2017-03-20       SOURCE:Xinhua News Agency
 

Promoting steady development of agriculture and continued increases in rural incomes

 

Excerpt from Report on the Work of the Government 2017

Delivered at the Fifth Session of the

Twelfth National People's Congress on March 5, 2017 and adopted on March 15, 2017

Li Keqiang

Premier of the State Council

 

We will do more to advance supply-side structural reform in agriculture, improve policies to boost agriculture and benefit farmers, and create more channels for rural residents to find employment and increase their incomes. We will ensure China's food security, see that agricultural modernization and new urbanization reinforce each other, and speed up efforts to foster new drivers powering agricultural and rural development.

 

We will push forward with structural adjustment in agriculture.

 

We will guide farmers in responding to market demand, increasing the supply of quality green agricultural products and the production of quality rice and wheat, and making appropriate reductions to the amount of land devoted to growing corn. We will expand trials to replace grain crop with feed crop cultivation to cover over 667,000 hectares. We will encourage the use of multiple channels to reduce excess stockpiles of corn. We will support major agricultural production areas in developing intensive processing of agricultural products, develop farm-based recreation or agritourism, extend industry chains and value chains, and step up the integrated development of primary, secondary, and tertiary industries in rural areas.

 

We will boost the development of modern agriculture.

 

We will work faster to see due standards are followed in agricultural production, and promote the development and protection of brand name agricultural products. We will create functional zones for grain production, major agricultural product protection areas, areas for growing quality and distinctively local agricultural products, and modern agriculture industrial parks. We will continue to improve rural land, upgrade low- and medium-yield cropland, and spread dry-farming techniques, adding 1.33 million hectares of farmland under highly water-efficient irrigation. We will strengthen the protection of cultivated land and improve work to offset cultivated land used for other purposes.

 

Developing appropriately scaled, diversified farming operations is vital for Chinese-style agricultural modernization, and these operations need to be covered by agricultural insurance. This year, in selected counties and county-level cities in 13 major grain-producing provinces, we will provide catastrophe insurance for farmers engaging in appropriately scaled farming operations. We will channel a portion of budgetary disaster relief funds into this initiative and expand the coverage and raise the benefits of the insurance scheme. We will improve the agricultural reinsurance system. We wish to use sustainable and sound agricultural insurance schemes to drive the development of modern agriculture.

 

We will deepen rural reforms.

 

We will take steady steps to reform the rural collective property rights system and deepen the pilot reform of the rural land system to see our farmers are granted more property rights.

 

We will improve pricing mechanisms for grain and other important agricultural products as well as the system for their purchase and storage. We will carry out comprehensive reform of the pricing for water used in agriculture. We will deepen reforms related to collective forest tenure, state forestry areas and farms, state-owned farms, and rural supply and marketing cooperatives. We will strengthen the development of rural community-level organizations. We will improve the mechanisms for encouraging business startups and innovation in rural areas, train more professional farmers of new kinds, support migrant workers in starting businesses in their hometowns and villages, and take further measures to encourage college graduates, demobilized military personnel, and scientists and engineers to work in rural areas.

 

We will step up the development of public facilities in rural areas.

 

A total of 200,000 kilometers of roads will be upgraded or built in rural areas. We will see that all rural areas have a steady and reliable supply of power and that all electric pumpsets on rural flatlands are connected. Fiber-optic broadband will be extended to 30,000 administrative villages. We will increase water supply to better ensure access to safe drinking water. We will intensify efforts to renovate dilapidated houses and improve rural living environments. Our goal is to develop rural China into a place where people can enjoy both the beauty of the countryside and the conveniences of modern living.

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