【英语中国】中国反驳西方的中国粮食威胁论 Does China Pose a Threat to Global Food Security? It Says No

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2014-5-22 09:30

小艾摘要: Twenty years ago, environmental advocate Lester Brown got in hot water with Beijing for writing a book called 'Who Will Feed China?' China was displeased with the suggestion in his book that the count ...
Does China Pose a Threat to Global Food Security? It Says No
Twenty years ago, environmental advocate Lester Brown got in hot water with Beijing for writing a book called 'Who Will Feed China?'

China was displeased with the suggestion in his book that the country's growing population and water scarcity could drastically burden the world's food resources. Beijing publicly criticized the author -- then began a series of reforms including improving farming techniques and adopting a national policy of self-sufficiency in grain consumption that vindicated Mr. Brown's arguments. It paved the way for a gradual rapprochement with the American, now 80.

Détente is over.

On Wednesday, China's agriculture ministry issued a statement again criticizing Mr. Brown. It took umbrage with an essay he wrote titled 'Can the World Feed China?' a riff on his earlier book. The essay details Mr. Brown's concerns that rising domestic pressures on food consumption could result in spiking food prices and political unrest as China joins in a global 'scramble for food.'

It isn't clear why Mr. Brown was singled out for criticism; many analysts have in one form or other also articulated these trends, though arguably not as directly or pungently. But the move underscores how increasingly sensitive China is to the growing impression that it can't feed itself and that its acquisitions of global food assets are posing a risk to food security for the rest of the world. China has been keen in recent years to head off any impression that it's on a global grab for natural resources.

Mr. Brown wasn't immediately available for comment.

The government is unhappy with the notion it's being blamed for sharpening global competition for food. Mr. Brown's essay said China's rising grain imports mean 'it is competing directly with scores of other grain-importing countries.' He also warned that China's purchase last year of U.S. pork producer Smithfield Foods 'was really a pork security move.' So too, he said, was China's deal with Ukraine to provide $3 billion in loans in exchange for corn. 'Such moves by China exemplify the new geopolitics of food scarcity that affects us all,' he wrote.

Not likely, ministry spokesman Bi Meijia said in the government's statement. Mr. Bi said 97% of China's grain consumption comes from its own output, not imports.

'On the issue of food security, China not only does not pose a threat to the world, but makes a contribution to global food security,' he said. China intends to continue its existing policies, he said.

Mr. Bi said rising grain imports aren't due to domestic shortages, but because global prices are lower than domestic prices. The ministry also pointed out that imports accounted for just 2.6% of domestic grain production volume in 2013, and just 4% of global output.

Zuma Press
二十年前,环保倡导人士布朗(Lester Brown)因为撰写《谁来养活中国》(Who Will Feed China?)一书而在中国惹上麻烦。

他在书中指出,中国不断增加的人口和水资源匮乏可能令世界粮食资源承受重大压力。这一说法令中国感到不快。中国政府公开批评了布朗,之后开始进行一系列改革,包括提高农业技术水平、采取粮食自给自足的国策,这恰恰证实了布朗的判断,为双方关系缓和创造了条件。布朗现年80岁。

但现在缓和关系再度趋于紧张。

周三,中国农业部再次发表声明批评布朗,对布朗撰写的《世界能否养活中国》(Can the World Feed China?)一文表示不满。布朗在文中详细谈到,在中国加入全球“抢粮”大潮之际,他对中国国内食品消费压力加大可能推高食品价格、加剧政治不稳定性感到担忧。

不清楚为何中国农业部单独批评布朗。很多分析师都曾以不同形式讨论过上述趋势,只是没有布朗那样直接和尖锐。但此举凸显出,对于外界认为中国无法实现粮食自给以及中国收购全球粮食资产给世界其他地区带来食品风险的问题,中国日趋敏感。近年来,中国一直在努力消除有关它在全球范围内争夺自然资源的印象。

记者未能立即联系到布朗对此置评。

中国政府对其加剧全球食品竞争这一指责很不满意。布朗在文章中写道,中国日渐增长的粮食进口量意味着中国正在与其他粮食进口国直接展开竞争。他还警告称,去年中国收购美国猪肉生产商Smithfield Foods的交易实际上是猪肉安全方面的举措。他还说,中国向乌克兰提供30亿美元贷款以换取玉米的交易也是这样。他写道,中国的这些行动是针对食品短缺的新地缘政治学的一个例证,对所有人都有影响。

针对中国粮食威胁论,中国农业部发言人毕美家在政府声明中予以反驳。毕美家说,中国粮食自给率超过97%。

毕美家表示,在粮食安全的问题上,中国不仅没有造成对世界的威胁,而是为世界粮食安全作出了贡献。他说,中国将继续执行现有政策。

毕美家还说,粮食进口增多并非因为国内产量不足,而是因为国际市场价格低于国内价格。中国农业部还指出,中国进口的谷物占国内谷物产量的比重不到2.6%,占国际市场的份额在4%左右。

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