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Chinese farmers' income to continue rising in 2009, official says

Chinese farmers would see their income continue to rise this year, Vice Minister of Agriculture Chen Xiaohua said at a press conference Saturday.

"As China's economy is recovering, there are more and more positive factors supporting the increase of farmers' income," said Chen.

Farmers' per capita cash income in the first half of this year reached 2,733 yuan (400 U.S. dollars), up 8.1 percent year on year. But the increase rate was 2.2 percentage points slower than that in the same period last year, according to Chen.

"The growth is remarkable and the statistics are pleasing. However, China is still short of a long-term mechanism for increasing farmers' income and efforts need to be made to increase the channels for farmers to earn more money," said Chen.

In the past, farmers' income was mainly driven up by increased grain production or raised prices. "Now, we should push forward agricultural industrialization to let market guide grain planting and agricultural production," Chen said.

Chen also stressed the importance of creating more jobs for surplus rural laborers in a bid to increase their salary income.

The salary income mainly comes from the earnings from working in local or urban enterprises.

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 Source : Xinhua  Editor: Ivy
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