Paid use of natural resources

China Daily, January 24, 2017
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The State Council, China's Cabinet, has recently issued a document on reform of the system for the paid use of natural resources with clear property rights that calls for the establishment of well-established rules and effective supervision by 2020.

A payment system for the use of natural assets is a core part of an ecological civilization.

The document outlines the key tasks for a system based on the different characteristics of six kinds of State-owned natural resources: land, water, minerals, forests, grasslands and marine resources.

According to the document, paid use will be extended to the public service sector and State-owned farming land. The differential charging system of water resources will be improved, and systems for the transfer of mining rights and a mining resources tax will be established.

Moreover, the authority is expected to establish a paid use system for State-owned forest resources, strictly implement the protection of forestry resources, and develop forest tourism through leasing or franchising.

In addition, the paid use system for marine areas, including islands, will be improved, and the authorities will stipulate the use rights for non-inhabited islands.

The Ministry of Land and Resources will take the leading role in implementing the reform and coordinate relevant ministries and departments. The ministry is also required to conduct further research on this issue and report the major problems and the work progress to the State Council in a timely manner.