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Developing Leisure Agriculture Is the Breakthrough Point for Supply-Side Reform



By Ye Xingqing, DRC


In this round of agricultural supply-side structural reform, developing leisure agriculture is an important breakthrough point.

First, developing leisure agriculture is the only way to enhance the competitiveness of small-scale agriculture. Viewing from the function of the product, limited by the product homogeneity and strictly non-tradable land resource endowment, it is difficult to change the competitiveness of bulk agricultural products. China's industrialization and urbanization growth has made its dependency ratio on imported agricultural products become constantly enlarged, and only by increasing the growing areas and the scale of labor market is not adequate to improve the competitiveness of agriculture in China. Given the fact that the attribute of agricultural leisure function is low, and the growing areas can’t be moved, its competitiveness mainly depends on the geographical, cultural and ethnic factors.

Second, developing leisure agriculture is the only way to improve the employment density of agriculture. It has become more difficult for Chinese farmers to find jobs outside agriculture, and the low agricultural productivity has led to high cost and low income for farmers. It is suggested that the proportion of total employment of agriculture should be further reduced, the agricultural productivity should be improved, farmers’ income should be increased, the development of leisure agriculture should be enhanced and the integrated development of thrice industries in rural areas should be promoted.

Third, developing leisure agriculture is the inevitable way to release the comparative advantage of later-developing regions. People are now more concerned about the function of agricultural products whereas the minority areas, remote areas and poor areas are in a comparative disadvantage state in this respect. Developing leisure agriculture is likely to create an opportunity for the re-shaping of agricultural regional pattern, which is conducive to expanding the geographical boundaries of leisure agriculture and tourism agriculture as well as to poverty alleviation with targeted measures.

Fourth, the demand for leisure agricultural functions of the whole society, especially the urban residents is rising. Driven by general willingness for purchase, the purchasing power of urban residents on leisure products has increased significantly. In addition, with the swift development of transportation and network, it would become easier to realize people’s purchasing intentions.


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