Business / Economy

China warns of rural land expropriation

(Xinhua) Updated: 2012-11-29 11:08

BEIJING - Rural stability and grain supply security face a number of challenges due to excessive land expropriation in the country's urbanization move, China's cabinet has warned.

The cabinet demanded more reforms and a better legal system to solve the problem, vowing stricter regulation on farmland expropriation.

After an executive meeting of the State Council, presided over by Premier Wen Jiabao, a cabinet statement said, "Rural land has been expropriated too much and too fast as industrialization and urbanization accelerate. It not only affects stability in the countryside but also threatens grain security."

The meeting passed a draft law amendment that altered rules on how to compensate farmers whose collectively-owned land is expropriated, the statement said.

The draft amendment, passed on Wednesday, will be submitted to the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress, China's top legislature, for deliberations, according to the statement.

The cabinet also urged giving more priority to the countryside in the government's efforts to boost investment and consumption to bolster a slowing economy.

The government must make efforts to beef up support for farmers and place rural development in a more important position, it said.

Protests by farmers over land seizures have erupted in villages across the country in recent years, prompting calls for better protection of farmers' property rights to the land they have contracted.

In a keynote report to the 18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China earlier this month, Chinese leader Hu Jintao pressed for the reform of land expropriation system and the increase of farmers' share of gains in land value.

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