China saw a steady development of agriculture over the 1996-2000 period with its added value increase rate of 19.4 percent, reported the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS).
A source from NBS said that the national grain reserve reached a record high in 1999 with the grain per capita topping 400 kilograms, the world average level.
The central government has doubled investment in agriculture in the past five years. One-third of the money went to the infrastructure updating.
As a result of such structural reform, the rapid development of crop growing, stock raising and fishing has improved Chinese living standards.
However, due to less domestic demand for food, the increased amount of agricultural products can no longer provide job opportunities for farmers. The 900 million farmers in China have experienced the slowest growth of their income in the last three years.
The government has promised to continue urbanizing more rural areas in a bid to raise farmers' income.
According to the NBS source, a large number of farmers have been transferred to the industry and service sectors during the past five years. In 1999, only 50.1 percent of the country's workforce were farmers, 2.1 percent less than in 1995.
There will be an annual increase of 8.5 million people in the already large farming population in the next five years, observers here estimated.