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Tuesday, June 20, 2000, updated at 14:47(GMT+8)

New Afforestation Goals Mapped Out

China has formulated the target of afforestation in a new period, as is known from a conference held in Beijing on Monday on national afforestation.

"From now on, in a period of considerable length, the No.1 goal of China's forestry development will focus on fostering and protecting forest resources," Wang Zhibao, director of the State Forestry Administration was quoted as saying.

By year 2005, 11.5 million hectares of forestation will be completed, with forest acreage to reach 18.2 percent; and another 23 million hectares of forestation will be built up by 2010 to make forest coverage in this country surpass 24 percent.

By the year 2050, suitable lands nationwide will all be forested, and construction work in areas with weak ecological environments will be completed, with national forest coverage to keep stable and reach above 26 percent.

In the strategy of afforestation work, priority should be given to certain key areas like upper reaches of the Yangtze River, upper and middle reaches of the Yellow River, said Li Yucai, vice-director of the State Forestry Administration.

Emphasis should also be put on sand prevention in areas circling Beijing, and shelter-forest building in northwest, northeast and north China, he said.

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China plans to replant 90 million hectares of forests by 2050 despite adverse landscapes and climates.

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