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Floods Cause Heavy Agricultural Losses in Taiwan
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Flooding triggered by seasonal downpours over the past few days had caused an estimated 467.16 million new Taiwan dollars (some US$14.37 million) in economic losses with the agricultural sector of Taiwan by Saturday, according to reports reaching here from Taipei.

The crops most devastated by the flooding include watermelons, rice, pears, citrus, persimmons, grapes, green onions and leafy vegetables, the reports said, adding that some 15,000 hectares of farmland have been affected by the flooding.

Much fallow farmland in central and southern Taiwan has been washed away or inundated, and many poultry ranches have suffered major damage, leaving at least 18,000 chickens dead, the reports said.

Meanwhile, watermelon and cantaloupe growers in Miaoli County, who have sustained the greatest losses among local farmers, are entitled to cash subsidies for their losses, while rice farmers and fruit growers in Hsinchu County can apply for soft loans for rehabilitation, the reports said.

(Xinhua News Agency June 11, 2006)

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