(Adds details from state planner’s report to parliament)
BEIJING, March 5 (Reuters) - China will aim to boost its grain production capacity by 50 million tonnes in 2023, Premier Li Keqiang said on Sunday, while also building storage centres in suburban areas for emergency supplies of daily necessities.
China is aiming to shore up its food security amid heightened geopolitical risks, which could threaten its heavy reliance on imports of animal feed grains like soybeans.
Speaking at the opening of the annual meeting of China’s parliament, Li reiterated a goal for higher grain production capacity published last month in a key annual rural policy document.
In its report to the annual parliament meeting that opened on Sunday, the state planner also reiterated local government responsibilities for ensuring food security and protecting cultivated land, adding that policies to support major grain producing regions would be improved.
It also said it would implement projects to upgrade the seed industry and make progress in building national centres for soybean seeds.
It added that it would start building storage facilities in suburban areas for the emergency supply of daily items.
A better response mechanism will be put in place to maintain stable supply and prices of chemical fertilizers and other agricultural materials, it said.
Reporting by Dominique Patton; Editing by Simon Cameron-Moore
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