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CPC session approves decision on rural reform, development
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Hu Jintao, general secretary of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee, delivers an important speech at the third Plenary Session of the 17th CPC Central Committee in Beijing, Oct. 12, 2008. [Photo/Xinhua]

The Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee on Sunday approved a decision on major issues concerning rural reform and development at the close of a four-day plenum.

Hu Jintao, general secretary of the CPC Central Committee, delivered a work report at the third Plenary Session of the 17th CPC Central Committee, which was held from Oct. 9 to 12 in Beijing.

The country was facing challenges in its rural development and reform, but it would firmly push forward the work, said the communique issued after the plenum.

"Rural infrastructure is still weak and needs improving. Rural development is lagging behind and needs support. Farmers' income increases slowly and needs speeding up," said the document.

"We will firmly push forward the rural reform. We will continue to emancipate the mind," it said. "We shall work out new concepts and ideas to solve the problems in rural development."

The government would try to make a breakthrough in reforming the rural system, proceed in liberating the rural economy and improving its dynamics, create a better economic environment, improve rural development policy, it said.

China will stick to and improve its rural basic economic system, the communique said. The system is based on the household contract responsibility system which entrusts the management and production of public owned farmlands to individual households through long-term contracts.

It will set up a "strict and normative" land management system in the countryside, expand policy support for agriculture, establish a modern rural financial network and a system to balance the development between rural and urban areas, and improve the rural democracy.

In the communique, the CPC promised to invest more government budget in public service in rural areas, including education, health care, employment, housing and pension sectors.

It also asked Party organs and governments at all levels to put rural development at the top of their agendas and embody the national rural development strategy in policies, planning, budgets and assigning officials.

It set a goal to double the per-capita disposable income of rural residents by 2020 from the 2008 level.

The CPC has always placed great importance on agriculture, rural development and farmers' life as they are vital to the country's overall development, the communique said.

The rural reform triggered China's economic reform three decades ago. It contributed to the establishment of the country's basic economic system and socialist market economy, improvement of people's life and modernization process, it said.

Photo taken on Oct. 12, 2008, shows all nine members of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee Hu Jintao (C), Wu Bangguo (4th R), Wen Jiabao (4th L), Jia Qinglin (3rd R), Li Changchun (3rd L), Xi Jinping (2nd R), Li Keqiang (2nd L), He Guoqiang (1st R) and Zhou Yongkang (1st L) attend the third Plenary Session of the 17th CPC Central Committee, which was held from Oct. 9 to 12 in Beijing. [Photo/Xinhua]

A total of 202 full members and 166 alternate members of the Committee attended the plenum, according to the communique.

Members of CPC central commission for discipline inspection and top officials of the relevant departments were also present at the session, the communique said.

Some delegates to the 17th CPC National Congress who have been working on agriculture and rural development at the grass roots, and experts and scholars on agriculture, rural areas and farmers also attended the plenum.

The plenum also analyzed the economic situation. The communique noted that the general situation in China was good, the economy had kept a relatively fast growth, the financial sector had been stable, and the basic trend of the country's economic development had not changed.

However, the plenum held that the turbulence of the international financial market had intensified, and the global economic growth had slowed down. The number of uncertain and unstable factors in the international economic environment had increased, while the domestic economic operation also suffered from some contradictions and problems.

"Therefore, we had to be mindful of potential dangers, and be prepared to take challenges," the communique said.

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