September 7, 2011


China raises funding for grain production


The Chinese government has added another RMB1.05 billion yuan (US$164 million) in subsidies for subsoiling operations in major grain-producing regions, the Ministry of Finance (MOF) said Tuesday (Sep 6).


The funds will be used to subsidise the farming of 6.24 million hectares of arable land in Hebei, Shanxi and nine other provinces and municipalities, according to an MOF statement.


By mid-August, the Chinese government had allocated RMB3.85 billion (US$602 million) in subsidies for the operation of 192,000 large- and medium-sized tractors and 13,000 subsoiling machines across the country.


More than 10 million hectares of farmland and fields for raising sugarcane are expected to be loosened and broken up by subsoilers at depths much deeper than can be achieved using a rototiller.


The use of subsoilers in farming is helpful in increasing soil quality and farmland productivity as subsoilers fracture soil to allow air and water to re-enter and promote better root growth.


The Chinese government has increased its funding for subsidies for the agricultural sector in recent months in a bid to protect its grain security.


Last month, the central government increased its subsidies to the country's Grain Risk Fund to RMB38.2 billion (US$5.97 billion) to ensure necessary spending by local governments to finance grain production and the establishment of cereal and cooking oil reserves.

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