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China to Beef up Human Resources Development in 2004

China will beef up human resources development this year through implementing the strategy of relying on talented personnel to strengthen the country, the country's top legislature was told Saturday.


Ma Kai, minister in charge of the State Development and Reform Commission, made the remarks in his report to the legislature on the implementation of the 2003 Plan for National Economic and Social Development and on the 2004 Draft Plan for National Economic and Social Development.


"The top priority for our work in education will continue to be rural education. We will lose no time in improving the mechanism for ensuring adequate funding for rural education to make it more regular and institutionalized."


He acknowledged that China will intensify its efforts to make nine-year compulsory education basically universal and to basically eliminate illiteracy among young and middle-aged people in the western region, he said.


"We will continue the project to renovate dangerous primary and secondary school buildings in rural areas and the national program to make compulsory education universally available in poverty-stricken areas."


Ma went on to say that China will work harder to develop high-quality universities and key disciplines and improve the quality of higher education, increase the number of key senior secondary schools and vigorously develop vocational education and continuing education.


Plans call for enrolling of 4 million undergraduate students and 330,000 graduate students in regular institutions of higher learning in 2004, the minister said.


(Xinhua News Agency March 6, 2004)


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