Process Management

News last update:6 Aug 2012

“China cannot rely on grain imports for grain security”

Agricultural Minister Han Changfu said China cannot rely on imports to ensure the security of its domestic grain supply, and that maintaining 95% self-sufficiency for rice, wheat and corn is a fundamental national policy orientation.

With its consumption of grains decreasing its volumes available for global export, China has to depend on its own output or risk unduly influencing international prices, Han said in the Qiushi Journal, a magazine published by the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China.
Grains available for trade worldwide total around 250 million tonnes, less than half of China's domestic grain production, Han noted.
Wheat and corn
The nation's current wheat supply is in slight surplus, while corn supply and demand are balanced and rice is in tight supply, he said.
In addition to China's purchases of international grain often sending prices higher, Han said that grain imports generally aren't a good deal due to high transportation costs in the vast country.
China imported a record 54.8 million tonnes of soybeans and a 15-year-high 1.5 million tonnes of corn in 2010.
Increased output
Meanwhile, China's grain output increased for a seventh consecutive year in 2010, to 546.4 million tonnes, the National Bureau of Statistics said in December.
But Chen Xiwen, director of the State Council's Office of Rural Work Leading Group, said China's self-sufficiency in grain supply may decline in coming years.

Dick Ziggers

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