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Chinese vice premier calls for enhanced ecological protection of pasturing areas


11:02, August 13, 2011

HULUN BUIR, Inner Mongolia, Aug. 12 (Xinhua) -- Vice Premier Hui Liangyu has called for enhanced ecological protection of pasturing areas and improved life of herdsmen.

At a national conference held Thursday and Friday at the city of Hulun Buir in north Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region, Hui said pasturing areas play a strategic role in the country's economic and social development.

He called for active promotion of animal husbandry, exploration of new paths for increasing herdsmen's income and job opportunities so as to improve people's well-being and promote ethnic unity and social stability.

China has more than four million square kilometers of pasturing areas in 268 counties of 13 provinces and autonomous regions.

Most of these regions are border highland areas inhabited by ethnic minorities, with more than 80 percent of them being regions of ethnic autonomy.

China's total amount of pasturing area stands at more than 4 million square km, or more than 40 percent of the country's total area, statistics show.

"Due to natural, geographical and historical reasons, pasturing areas are still the country's underdeveloped regions that suffered ecologically," Hui said at the national conference, the fourth of its kind since 1949. The previous one was held in 1987.

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