China issues new land management statute, effective June 1

2008-05-29 11:59:47 GMT       2008-05-29 19:59:47 (Beijing Time)       Xinhua English

BEIJING, May 29 (Xinhua) -- China has published a statute, "Methods for Punishing Violations of Regulations on Land Management", that replaces the "Provisional Methods for Punishing Violations of Regulations on Land Management" as of June 1.

The document was recently issued jointly by the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection (CCDI), the Ministry of Supervision (MOS), the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security (MHRSS) and the Ministry of Land Resources (MLR).

The new statute is the latest indication that the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China (CPC) and the State Council have always given priority to the issue of land use. It follows several important measures taken by the authorities to maintain order in land management.

The existing regulations have played an important role since they were enacted on March 2, 2000, but they need to be amended and improved to meet changing requirements, according to an official with the CCDI and the MOS.

China still faces a situation in which there are frequent instances of the illegal occupation of land, cultivated land in particular.

The official urged disciplinary inspection and supervision offices at different levels to seriously study and implement the new regulations and "strictly investigate and punish law-breaking and discipline-violating activities and protect cultivated land in a substantial way."

The 24-clause statute was based on the Land Management Law, the Law on Administrative Supervision, the Civil Servants Law, and the Provisions on the Punishment of Civil Servants in Administrative Departments, according to the official.

The government wants to preserve 1.8 billion mu (120 million hectares) of cultivated land, which is believed to be the base line to ensure food security for China's 1.3 billion people.

I have comments _COUNT_