BEIJING, December 25, 2012 – Following the meeting held by the State Council Leading Group Office of Poverty Alleviation and Development on June 28, 2012 that mobilized efforts to develop the areas in Yunnan, Guangxi and Guizhou that suffer from stony desertification, Qianxinan Autonomous Prefecture has accelerated the comprehensive treatment of stony desertification in recent years, initially taking the road to civilized development and gathering pace in shaking off poverty and achieving prosperity. Qianxinan is part of the typical karst areas and the area with the most concentrated, largest and highest level of stony desertification in Yunnan, Guangxi and Guizhou. Its efforts include the following aspects:

i) Strengthen investigations and researches and develop scientific plans. Treating stony desertification is a major part of ecological construction and a cause that concerns the interests of offspring. Seizing the opportunities created by relevant policies and based on local conditions, Qianxinan has developed plans to comprehensively treat stony desertification, established the joint meeting system for the development and poverty reduction in the stony desertification areas and reported the problems arising from the treatment process to relevant State authorities in a timely manner to win support.

ii) Intensify ecological construction and implement ecological migration. Qianxinan has combined natural restoration with planting of forests, vigorously returned farmland to forests or grassland, and implemented projects like protecting natural forests, building forest shelters along the Pearl River and developing fast-growing and high-yield forests. As a result, the forest coverage rate improved from 40.67% in 2006 to 46% in 2011. It has developed circular economy and ecological industries, and implemented the ecological migration project, in which the rural people in ecologically vulnerable areas are moved to small towns. This fundamentally eases the pressure on the ecological environment in the stony desertification areas resulted from a large population.

iii) Adjust industrial structures and develop ecological industries. Qianxinan has carried out large-scale ecological construction for six years, developing many modes that are suitable for local conditions and help change the loss of water and soil caused by corn planting on steep slopes. As a result, the ratio of grain crops and cash crops has been adjusted from 58:42 in the previous year to 49:51 this year. Qianxinan has vigorously developed modern agriculture and advanced competitive and distinctive industries to increase farmers’ income.

iv) Encourage reasonable development based on technological progress. Without damaging natural ecology, Qianxinan has improved the system to popularize science and technologies, scaled up application of technological fruits and developed a number of ecological agricultural bases that feature conservation of water and soil, restorable ecology and high productivity. It encourages all the economic players to join in the comprehensive treatment of stony desertification and implements the policy of whichever that treats the stony desertification will get the benefits and whichever that damages the ecology will be responsible for the restoration.

v) Raise funds and expand partner assistance in poverty reduction. Qianxinan has raised funds through multiple channels and explored the establishment of the ecological compensation mechanism. While increasing input, the government strengthens coordination among departments, makes full use of funds and guides inflows of private capital. It also tries to win preferential policies in fiscal transfer payment, project land, industrial fostering, taxation, mining rights and investment & financing, and makes partner assistance a major move in treating stony desertification, working to build itself into a well-off society in an all-round way.

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