China will start its second national land survey on July 1st to obtain up-to-date and accurate land data for policy making, according to the State Council, or cabinet.
Local authorities should finish the survey before the end of June 2009 and report the new land data to the Ministry of Land and Resources on Oct. 31, 2009, said a circular issued by the State Council on Thursday.
The circular said China will use advanced remote imaging technologies to survey all the land used for different functions including farmland, forests, land used by industry and infrastructure and development parks. Acreages and their distributions will be mapped and recorded nationwide.
The country will survey every plot of land to get information on ownership and on how the land is used, and gather information on land owned by the state and by collectives in the countryside.
The survey will also look at the situation of basic farmland that is widely seen as critical to the country's food security, according to the circular.
China will build an electronic database for all the survey findings and figure out statistical and monitoring methods to track changes in land resources and a system to update the information quickly, said the circular.
It said the second land survey will help build a resource-saving and environmentally-friendly society and to maintain sustainable economic growth.
The survey will help the government carry out scientific land planning, use and protect land effectively, and introduce tough measures to protect arable land, according to the circular.
It will help the government ensure national food security and better protect farmers' interests and thereby bolster social stability, the circular stated.
China conducted its first national land survey in 1996 but, given the huge changes that have taken place in urban and rural areas, the data collected 11 years ago are now out of date.