China's radical urbanization may harm farmers' welfare, create urban slums: Scholar

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Beijing, Mar 20 (ANI): A Chinese scholar has warned that radical urbanization in the country might harm farmers' welfare and create "urban slums".

Professor He Xuefeng, a sociologist with Huazhong University of Science and Technology, believes that if China's urbanization develops at a rapid pace, the cities might not be ready to provide proper public service for newcomers.

"In this scenario, these newcomers in town will be driven into urban slums. We have seen lots of such examples in some developing countries," Xinhua news agency quoted Professor Xuefeng, as saying.

The statement comes after statistics that China has about 900 million rural residents and about 145 million of them have left their hometowns to work in cities.

Professor Xuefeng further doubted the feasibility of encouraging more farmers to settle in cities and transfer their land to economic entities for industrial projects or to other farmers.

"Whether rural residents will become city dwellers depends on whether they can get a decent life in cities or not," Professor Xuefeng said.

"If rural residents do not find a good job and can not afford the expensive life in cities, they can still go back home for farming. There is enough room for them to turn around," he added.

He suggested that the country should push urbanization step by step, taking full account of farmers' real interests. (ANI)

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