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Farms in Inner Mongolia enjoy high-tech upgrade

By ZHUANG QIANGE and PANG BO | China Daily | Updated: 2024-06-14 09:55

A farmer uses agricultural machinery to compress straw stalks into blocks that will be used as winter fodder for farm animals in Tongliao, Inner Mongolia autonomous region, on Nov 4. [Photo/Xinhua]

In Tongliao, Inner Mongolia autonomous region, the prefecture-level city has added 1.73 million hectares of permanent basic farmland so far, including 404,700 hectares featuring shallow-buried drip irrigation, high-efficiency operations, water-saving results and high-standard farmland cultivation.

Last year, Tongliao netted a record grain output of 9.45 billion kilograms, an increase of 112.5 million kg over the previous year.

This year alone, the city plans to realize another 267,000 hectares of high-efficiency water-saving and high-standard farmland for its 2.8 million residents, in a bid to boost efficient agricultural production.

Bao Yushan, who works at Gaolintun seed and stock farm in Horqin district, said with the high-standard farmland project, several difficulties in farming have been resolved, but such acreage has relatively high irrigation requirements.

To lay a foundation for farmland harvesting, the capacity of local power transformers and electricity lines has to be increased, and some new lines must be put in place, Bao said.

Zhao Puguang, deputy general manager of Horqin District Power Supply Co under State Grid Tongliao Power Supply Co, said they have constructed new supporting power facilities and offered tailor-made solutions to aid local agricultural work.

"We have ushered in a three-pronged approach to aid local farming and animal husbandry, with an aim to bolster the city's rural industrial development and rural vitalization," he said.

These include ordering supervision checklists, weekly reports and on-site checks to expedite the construction of supporting power facilities, establishing green channels for power expansion and providing round-the-clock services for farmers, in addition to implementing various irrigation-optimizing measures for high-standard farmland, he said.

Zhou He, a farmer from Dongfeng village, said prior to the renovation work, there used to be a large number of utility poles in the fields, making it highly inconvenient for agricultural machinery to maneuver around.

"Nowadays, all the poles and wires have been moved to the ridges between fields, helping to save cultivated land, improve irrigation efficiency and please the eye," he said.

Yin Zhipeng, Zhao's colleague, added that the city still has another 800,000 hectares of eligible basic farmland to be built, and intends to transform all the eligible permanent basic farmland into high-standard farmland by 2026, thereby achieving a full coverage scenario.

Yin said that in 2023, Tongliao's regional GDP hit 160.9 billion yuan ($22.5 billion), an increase of 5.2 percent year-on-year.

Among this, the added value of agriculture was 40.72 billion yuan, a jump of 4.2 percent, while the secondary industry gained an added value of 49.29 billion yuan, up 4.9 percent and the services sector saw an added value of 70.88 billion yuan, 5.9 percent higher.

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