China’s Banking Regulatory Commission has called on banks to offer special support to the agriculture sector as severe shortages of maize, cotton and sugar, among other crops, threaten food supplies.
This was the first official admission that the country faces maize shortages, Meat Trade News Daily reported. It followed repeated assurances from the government grain authority that the country has ample reserves.
Reports also said drought has affected winter wheat crops in 17 % of China’s wheat growing areas and dry weather is forecast to extend until spring next year.
Analysts said it was too early to predict how the overall wheat harvest in May would be affected, since irrigation or a change in weather could influence growing conditions.
According to Business Recorder, the State Flood Control and Drought Relief Headquarters has said some 3.87 million hectares of planted cropland was hit by a drought.