China's External Cooperation of Agriculture after the Entry into WTO
Ni Hongxing, Department of International Cooperation, Ministry of Agriculture
achievements have been made in China's external cooperation in agriculture since the reform and opening up
Since the reform and opening up, remarkable achievements have been made in China's external cooperation in agriculture, which have
a positive role in promoting a sustained, rapid and
development of the industry as a whole and of the rural economy in particular. First, the utilization of foreign investment in the agricultural sector has grown
. Since the early 1980s, there have been more than 10,000 foreign- invested
projects with a total contracted investment of US$20 billion. The introduction of foreign investment has not only made up for China's insufficient input into agriculture, but also has mobilized additional funds raised from various sources including the central and local
, collective entities and the farmers
Second, China has introduced
applicable agricultural technologies and quality varieties which have accelerated progress in China's agricultural technology. Through international cooperation, China has imported over 100,000 animal and plant germ plasma resources and a large number of advanced,
and economically efficient technologies. These technologies include: film mulching, dry nursery low density planting in rice cultivation, agricultural remote sensing, straw ammonification, comprehensive prevention and cure, mechanized chicken farming, fish culture in net pens and the preservation of
fruits and vegetables. Notably, film mulching has been applied to nearly 100 crops, and dry nursery low density planting technology has been promoted in over 10
. These two technologies alone have generated over 1 billion renminbi worth of benefits. In addition, the overall competence of China's agricultural research and development has been improved as a result of cooperative research, the import of scientific research equipment, the exchange of research people and training, all of which has
to the recent progress in China's agricultural science and technology.
Third, external cooperation has boosted the development of agriculture-
industries and undertakings. Typical examples are the following:
the EU aid for dairy projects that have played an important role in
the development of China's
China's agricultural technology popularization system that has been gradually established and developed through the trust fund aid programme of the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization and aid from the United Nations Development Programme; and
China's first agricultural census that was completed on the basis of
in technology, staffing and equipment that was established with the assistance of aid from Italy and the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization.
Fourth, external cooperation fostered the formation of a large number of modern agricultural
. The utilization of foreign investment in agriculture has resulted in the establishment of a large number of modern joint
foreign-owned enterprises. At the same time this investment has introduced new concepts of modern agricultural management and operation, which have changed the conventional perception of agriculture as a simplistic sector of cultivation and farming into an understanding of agriculture as an industry that involves, in addition to cultivation and farming, processing, transportation and sales, with each element being closely linked, interacting and
. This has exerted a profound influence over China's agricultural development. At present, foreign- invested agricultural enterprises are playing a very important role in China' s industrialized agricultural operations and the export of agricultural products.
Fifth, various grant aid programmes have facilitated China's efforts to help the poor and provide disaster relief. The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP), for example, has been providing food and emergency aid since 1980. By implementing food-for- work initiatives, the aid programmes have helped establish comprehensive agricultural development and post- disaster
projects in China. By the end of 2001, WFP had approved 66 food aid programmes, with a total value equivalent to US$900 million. Most of these projects are distributed among nationally or provincially designated poor counties and have benefited over 30 million people. In addition, the International Fund for Agricultural Development has provided 16 aid programmes for comprehensive agricultural development in China, involving total contracted loans of US$400 million, of which most are on highly preferential terms.
This chapter was originally written in Chinese and was translated by Li Yong.