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China's drought widens, damaging rice and corn
BEIJING A drought in south-central China has spread to three more provinces, hurting corn and rice crops, China National Grain and Oils Information Center said Thursday.

The municipality of Chongqing and Sichuan Province have been hit the hardest by the drought, which is now damaging crops in Hunan, Hubei and Anhui Provinces, according to the report from the information center, which is an affiliate of the State Grain Administration. The report provided no further details of the damage.

Drought conditions throughout China have destroyed 665,000 hectares, or 1.64 million acres, and "affected" 6.7 million hectares of crops over the past three months, according to a report Thursday by Xinhua, the official press agency. Xinhua cited Tian Yitang, deputy director of the Office of State Flood Control and Drought Relief.

Chongqing and Sichuan have reported the worst drought conditions in 50 years with 2.5 million hectares of crops "affected" in those areas, Xinhua said without specifying which crops were damaged.

The main agricultural products in Chongqing, with a population of more than 30 million people, and Sichuan, with more than 80 million, are rice, fruit and vegetables. South-central China accounts for about one tenth of the country's corn output, according to government data. Sichuan is also a major producer of livestock. Anhui, Hunan and Hubei are primarily rice producers.

MGR Archive 21.8.2006
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Russia Rapan $ 700
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