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Rural modernization will come with risks

(Global Times)

08:18, February 17, 2013

The process of implementing China's first policy document of the year, which focuses on rural issues, may come with problems and risks, experts told the Global Times Saturday.

On January 31, the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China and the State Council jointly issued their chief economic policy document for 2013, which for the 10th year in a row is directed at rural issues.

This year's "No.1 central document" says it is aimed at "accelerating agricultural modernization and boosting the developmental vitality of rural areas."

And on Saturday, the State Council rolled out a total of 80 clauses assigning relevant departments to make policies to implement the document.

"But the document may create some problems and risks in the development of our country's rural areas," Du Zhixiong, research department head of the Rural Development Institute under the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, told the Global Times Thursday.

Du's comment referenced document goals such as encouraging the establishment of large-scale commercial farming, developing resources in rural areas, and guiding urban capital to invest in certain agricultural businesses.

"Capital chases money all the time. And there are questions about how to prevent a jump in prices of agricultural products once massive capital enters the sector," said Du, noting that food safety and protecting local farmers and the environment are also important issues that need to be addressed properly when companies run big businesses in rural areas.

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