Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao spent the New
Year holiday visiting farmers and citizens of a revolutionary base in east
China's Jiangsu Province in the first two days of 2007, conveying New Year
greetings to the locals.
|Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao (2nd R) talks with a saleswoman while
inspecting a supermarket in Lianyungang, east China's Jiangsu Province
January 1, 2006. [Xinhua]|
Braving chilly weather, Wen walked through farmland, chatted with farmers,
inspected food supply of a supermarket and visited some families of Lianyungang
City in northern part of Jiangsu.
Farmers' income and grain price became the concerns of the premier, also a
member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party
of China (CPC) Central Committee.
On Jan. 1, Wen came to the Qingxin Village of Donghai County and visited some
households, asking them about the grains they had harvested, sold and saved.
At the home of villager Chen Hou'e who sold more than 3,500 kg of wheat after
a summer harvest last year and regretted a little bit due to the recent surge in
grain prices, Wen, holding a handful of paddies from a rice bowl, smilingly
asked whether she was thinking of selling the rest grain soon.
"It's no hurry to sell them out at this stage. We can wait for a while,"
"I hope farmers can benefit more when grain prices are on the rise in some
areas. The prices are recovering from the previous low level," said Wen.
Later he came to a rice processing and distribution company. At the door, he
inquired about the grain price of that day from villager Zhou Lizhen who came to
sell her paddies to the company.
Zhou said one kg of grain can be sold at 1.84 yuan and all the grain in her
family had been sold out.
Then the premier held a small seminar in the company's workshop, inviting
some rice company managers and villagers coming to sell their crops to reckon
the profits from growing grain.
Wen was told that if the rice price rose 20 cents for each kilogram, four
more cents could go to farmers, five cents to processing companies, and two
cents to transportation process.
Some villagers said most wheat at farmers' homes had been sold but about 60
percent of paddies remained unsold. Wen reiterated that the grain price increase
should at first benefit farmers and the government should provide accurate
Villager Bo Kangbo, a big crop-grower, said his fellow villagers have enough
confidence in growing crops as farmers are not only free from being taxed but
receiving state subsidies as well. In addition, grain prices were increasing
In Huangchuan Town, a strawberry base, Wen asked about the strawberry output
and sales in a farm. There are about 1,200 hectares of strawberry land, bringing
wealth to more than 6,000 rural families.
When villagers told Wen that growers could earn about 15,000 yuan (1,875 U.S.
dollars) annually for each mu (1/15 hectare). He was very happy and encouraged
them to keep working hard and develop more local businesses in order to raise
The premier also cared about the current development of the port city
Lianyungang, the east starting point of the new Asian-European land bridge, also
one of the first cities in China to launch reform and opening-up last century.
On Tuesday morning, Wen visited workers' families, inspected the port docks
and expressed his gratitude to dock workers on holiday duties.
"Lianyungang City boasts a strategic position in the country's regional
economic development as it connects the Yangtze River Delta, the Bohai Bay,
northeast Asia and central and western parts of China up to central Asia through
railways," said Wen in the chilly wind.
The premier also visited the Tianwan nuclear power station and especially
stressed the significance of nuclear power development, saying energy structure
should be adjusted and the quality and safe operation of the station must be
In a supermarket, Wen carefully examined the price tags and asked customers
and salesmen about the sales figures in the New Year holidays. People buying
goods apparently felt exited to see the premier walking into the supermarket who
gave them warm "happy New Year" greetings.
In the evening, Wen went to the home of 70-year-old retired worker Liu
Lisheng who has a big family of 11 members. The premier inquired about the
increase of retirement pay and medical insurance.
"I'm glad to see that you are all in good health and have pleasant family
relationship," Wen said.