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Vice Premier Proposes to Allocate More Funds to Rural Areas

China will allocate more public funds to rural areas through reform and development, Vice Premier Hui Liangyu said in Beijing Tuesday.

The move aims to bring the benefits of China's modernization process to more Chinese farmers, Hui said at the international symposium on public finance coverage of rural areas, which was jointly held by the Ministry of Finance and the World Bank.

Problems facing China's agriculture, rural area and farmers are at the top of the Chinese government's agenda, said Hui.

China has witnessed farmers' enthusiasm for growing grain. Local governments have paid more attention to agriculture and grain plantation in recent years by offering better conditions to farmers.

Rural production and living conditions have been greatly improved as a result of infrastructure construction efforts in rural areas and environmental improvement, he said.

According to Hui, new government funding in education, health, culture and family planning will mainly be used in rural areas and more efforts are being made to improve compulsory education in rural areas and advance pilot projects for a new rural medical care system.

China is endeavoring to build an assistance system for poor people in rural areas step by step, start minimum standard of living pilot projects for rural people in areas where conditions permit, and increase funds allocated for poverty reduction, he said.

Hui said China had proposed the great mission of building a new socialist rural area in the 11th Five-Year Program of national economic and social development from 2006 to 2010.

The Chinese government will continue to give priority to finding solutions for problems facing agriculture, rural areas and farmers, upholding the policy of coordinated development of urban and rural areas and enhancing the public funding coverage in rural areas.

World Bank President Paul Wolfowitz attended and addressed the opening ceremony of the symposium.

(Xinhua News Agency October 19, 2005)


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