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Steps taken to ensure rational use of land
By Liang Chao (China Daily)
Updated: 2005-04-16 05:51

Key State projects will be given top priority for land use in China this year, while land use for other purposes is to face stricter than ever controls.

"Land authorities throughout China should have done a good job in approving and examining land for the State priority projects of energy, transportation, water conservancy, major urban infrastructure, education, public health and national defence," an official said on Friday.

Addressing a press conference on China's overall land and resources in 2004, Hu Cunzhi, director of the planning department of the ministry of land and resources, made it clear that, this year, the nation's macro-regulation policies will be continued on land supply and rectification of the land market.

The ministry has set the year's land use plan at lower levels than previously, Hu confirmed, but gave no further details.

"Although the total amount of land supply has increased a little this year, the overall supply has been pulled back," he said.

"This year, land supply for the iron and steal, and cement and electrolytic aluminium industries will be halted along with constructions like golf courses and luxury villas," he confirmed.

He said he hopes such discriminatory land supply polices can help stabilize land prices and the cost of related real estate projects across the country.

According to the latest survey of 51 major cities in China, last year comprehensive prices of urban land went up over 6 per cent.

The land price rises were relatively stable in prosperous urban areas, but prices jumped much higher in some of China's mid-western cities, according to a survey. Reviewing land and resources use over the past year, sources from the ministry said, China's tough measures to regulate its land market had paid off with the cancellation of 4,813 so-called development zones or 70 per cent of the total.

(China Daily 04/16/2005 page2)

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