[photopress:countryside2.jpg,full,alignright]The Chinese government is to double the land use fees on new sites for construction beginning January 1. The notice has come from the The Finance Ministry, the Ministry of Land and Resources and the People’s Bank of China.
30 percent of the collected land use fees to be handed over to the central revenue, while 70 percent is to be retained by the provincial-level government.
The fees are to be used specifically for the development of cultivated land.
Pan Ming, of the Ministry of Land and Resources, said the new standards would have a positive impact on the protection and development of cultivated land.
The current land use fees were set in 1999 and have 15 classes with the highest class at RMB70 ($8.75) per square meter and the lowest at RMB5.
Pan Ming said the current standards failed to match actual earnings on the land use and had failed to discourage the blind expansion of land use for construction.
Collected land use fees in 2005 were only RMB21.45 billion, compared with RMB76.3 billion of net earnings on newly added land for construction.