State answers concerns
Ministries and commissions of the State Council have responded to a wide range of concerns from the public and the media about recent policies, including farmers’ income, rural health insurance, food safety and safe production.
Raising farmers’ incomes
In an interview, a leading official from the National Development and Reform Commission summarized a recently issued document on helping farmers raise their incomes.
The average farmer’s per capita disposable income saw 9.6 percent annual growth during the 12th Five-Year Plan period (2011-15), which is a major achievement, the spokesman said, adding that the gap between urban and rural income is still huge, because the farmer’s disposable income is 2.73 times that of the latter. New challenges, such as the falling prices of agricultural products and growing instability in the labor market, have emerged and caused a slowdown in farmers’ income growth. This year the rate has fallen to 6.5 percent, even lower than the country’s overall GDP growth rate.