On the Promotion of Stable Agricultural Development and the Sustained Increase of Farmers' Income
On February 1, 2009, the Central Government of China released the No.1 Central Document for that year, emphasising that the primary objective is to maintain the steady and rapid development of the agricultural and rural economy. The focus is on stabilising grain production, increasing income, strengthening the foundation, and prioritising people's livelihoods. The Document further intensifies policies favourable to farmers, boosts scientific and technological support, enhances investments, optimises industrial structure, promotes reforms and innovations, and strives to ensure national food security and the effective supply of main agricultural products. There is also an unwavering commitment to continuously increase farmers' income.
The document calls for enhanced support and protection for agriculture.
Further investment in agriculture and rural areas is crucial. To expand domestic demand and implement proactive fiscal policies, the rural issues should be the main focus of investment. A substantial increase in the state's investment for rural infrastructure construction and social development is necessary. The proportion of budgetary fixed-asset investments for agriculture and rural areas should rise, with new government bond uses favouring the "three rurals" (agriculture, rural areas and farmers).
A significant increase should be in agricultural subsidies. In 2009, based on the substantial increase in subsidies from the previous year, further subsidy funds should be added. Direct subsidies for grain farmers should rise. Efforts should be made to increase seed subsidies, raise subsidy standards, achieve full coverage for rice, wheat, maize, and cotton, and expand the scope of oilseed and soybean quality seed subsidies. There should also be large-scale subsidies for the purchase of agricultural machinery.
Maintain a reasonable level of agricultural product prices. It is essential to closely monitor domestic and international agricultural product markets, strengthen government regulation timely, employ various measures flexibly, and strive to prevent a decline in agricultural product prices, protect against the adverse effects of cheap grain on farmers, and ensure a steady growth in agricultural income.
Enhance the ability of rural financial services. The development of microloans and micro-financial services should be vigorously promoted. There should be accelerated development of policy-based agricultural insurance, expanding pilot areas and increasing the types of insurance offered. Efforts should also speed up the establishment of an agricultural reinsurance system and a fiscal-supported disaster risk dispersion mechanism. Encouraging the development of mutual cooperative insurance and commercial insurance business in rural areas is vital.
The document calls for the stable development of agricultural production.
Efforts should be made to support grain production. It is vital to stabilise grain sowing areas, optimise varietal structure, improve yield per unit area, and continuously enhance comprehensive production capabilities.
Support the concentrated development of oil crops, cotton, sugar crops, potatoes, natural rubber, and other economic crops in advantageous areas. There should be active promotion of facility-based production of vegetables, fruits, tea, flowers, and other horticultural products.
Accelerate the development of standardised and healthy breeding of livestock and aquaculture.
Strictly monitor the entire process of agricultural product quality and safety.
Strengthen the regulation of agricultural product imports and exports.
The document calls for strengthening the material support and service system of modern agriculture.
Accelerate the pace of agricultural technological innovation. It is crucial to increase investments in agricultural technology, raise funds through multiple channels, establish an agricultural technological innovation fund, and prioritise support for scientific research in key areas, essential products, and core technologies.
Accelerate the construction of high-standard farmlands. Vigorously promote land reclamation, formulate good plans, concentrate on promoting rural land reclamation in contiguous areas, implement integrated management of fields, water, roads, and forests, carry out large-scale transformation of medium and low-yield fields, and increase the proportion of high-standard farmlands. Speed up the implementation of dry farming demonstration projects.
Strengthen the construction of water conservancy infrastructure.
Accelerate the advancement of agricultural mechanisation. Popularise mechanisation in the seeding, harvesting, and other stages of major grain and oil crops. Expedite the research and development of lightweight agricultural machinery suitable for hilly areas and large-scale agricultural machinery suitable for large-scale operations.
Promote the construction of key ecological projects. Consolidate the achievements of returning farmland to forest, increase investment in natural forest protection. Build modern forestry, develop mountainous forest special products, eco-tourism, and carbon sink forestry. Expand the scope of the "returning grazing land to grassland" project, strengthen the monitoring and early warning system for forest and grassland fires, and enhance fire prevention infrastructure construction. Accelerate the comprehensive management of desertification in key areas and small watersheds, launch the comprehensive treatment project for soil erosion on sloping farmlands, and strengthen the prevention of geological disasters such as flash floods and mudslides.
Strengthen the construction of the agricultural product market system. Enhance support for the construction of infrastructure for agricultural product wholesale markets, collection and distribution centres in key production areas. Promote the construction of large grain logistics nodes, agricultural product cold chain systems, and fresh agricultural product distribution centres. Implement policies to stop collecting individual business management fees and market management fees. Support large chain supermarkets and agricultural product circulation companies to connect with agriculture, and build direct procurement bases for agricultural products.
Promote the construction of grassroots agricultural public service institutions. According to the requirement of comprehensively improving township or regional agricultural technology extension, animal and plant epidemic prevention and control, and agricultural product quality supervision public service institutions nationwide within three years, it is urgent to clarify responsibilities, improve teams, perfect mechanisms, guarantee funds, and effectively enhance service capabilities.
The document calls for the promotion of the integration of urban and rural economic and social development.
Accelerate the development of rural compulsory education, medical care, pension, and minimum living guarantee and other social undertakings.
Accelerate rural infrastructure construction. Adjust the construction plan for ensuring rural drinking water safety. Expand the coverage rate of the power grid's electricity supply. Increase investment in rural hydroelectric construction. By the end of 2010, all townships nationwide and qualified administrative villages in the eastern and central regions should be accessible by asphalt (or cement) roads, and qualified administrative villages in the western region should be accessible by roads. Increase investment in rural biogas construction, and expand pilot demonstrations for straw solidification gasification. Develop rural informatisation.
Actively expand employment opportunities for rural labour.
Promote comprehensive reforms in rural areas.
Enhance the vitality of county-level economic development.
Actively explore rural markets. Support circulation companies to cooperate with production companies to establish regional rural commodity procurement alliances and construct and transform daily consumer goods circulation networks in rural areas using modern circulation methods.
Refining the national poverty alleviation strategy and policy framework. Adhering to a developmental approach to poverty alleviation, procedures are formulated to effectively integrate the rural minimum living guarantee system with poverty alleviation and development initiatives. The implementation of new poverty alleviation standards is set in motion, ensuring that comprehensive poverty alleviation policies are directed towards rural populations who have not yet achieved basic subsistence and those with low incomes. The intention is to swiftly stabilise their basic needs and foster poverty elimination and wealth accumulation, with a special emphasis on enhancing the self-development capabilities of the rural poor. There's an ongoing commitment to amplify the injection of funds into poverty alleviation, intensify efforts at village-wide progress, elevate the quality of labour force migration training, and enhance the level of industrialised poverty alleviation. The role of industry-specific poverty alleviation is to be fully leveraged, continuing to mobilise participation from all sectors of society in the cause of poverty alleviation and actively engaging in international exchanges and cooperation in the anti-poverty domain.
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Orignial Chinese Version (Full Text)