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Home >> China
UPDATED: 08:21, December 13, 2006
Chinese premier eases worries over grain price hike
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Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao visited a Beijing market on Tuesday to inspect grain supply amid the recent price hike.

Figures with the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) show that China's grain prices increased by 4.7 percent year on year in November, one percentage point higher than the rise in October.

The hike indicates a normal recovery of farm produce prices after the decline in recent years, which means good news to farmers, Wen told a group of residents representatives from the Sanyili residential area in Xuanwu District after visiting a local supermarket named Huaqiang.

The prices, however, must maintain a reasonable level, and grain supply must be ensured, Wen said.

He stressed that consumers' interests must be protected while tighter measures must be taken to prevent speculators' from forestalling goods and jacking up prices.

The premier also called for special care for families with subsistence difficulties.

"It's the duty of governments and officials at all levels to help people with living strain," Wen said, urging officials to visit such families and help solve their problems.

The premier assured the residents of the grain supply, citing an expected grain output of at least 490 billion kilograms this year.

The country has seen good harvests for three consecutive years due to government policies which boost agriculture, Wen said.

China's grain output was 484 billion kilograms last year.

Wen also visited some low-income families.

Source: Xinhua

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