China raises rice purchase prices for 2012

Updated: 2012-02-02 15:12


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BEIJING - China's top economic planning agency announced Thursday it would raise the minimum purchase prices for rice in 2012 to encourage farmers to grow more grains.

It is the fifth consecutive yearly price increase aimed to boost grain production and farmers' income.

The minimum purchase price for early indica rice will be increased to 120 yuan ($19.01) per 50 kg, up 18 yuan from the 2011 price, the National Development and Reform Commission said in a statement on its website.

The agency lifted the price for mid-and-late indica rice to 125 yuan ($19.8) per 50 kg, up 18 yuan from the 2011 price.

In addition, the price for japonica rice will be increased to 140 yuan per 50 kg, up 12 yuan from the 2011 price.

Rice and wheat are the two major grain crops in China. The domestic grain output rose to 571.21 million tons last year, marking the eighth consecutive yearly growth.

China's central authority said on Wednesday, in its first policy document for 2012, that the nation will continue to step up investment and subsidies for agriculture this year in order to stabilize grain production.

The country will also offer more subsidies for major grain-producing areas, prominent farmers, and farming cooperatives, with direct subsidies for grain growers to be increased, it said.