BEIJING, Mar. 14 -- China's State Council on Friday enacted the Regulations on Land Rehabilitation, which took effect as of the same day.
The new regulations were adopted at an executive meeting of the State Council held on Feb 22 and okayed by Premier Wen Jiabao. They will replace the previous rules published in November 1988, said the State Council, or the Cabinet, in a decree.
Land rehabilitation covers measures taken to reclaim land destroyed by construction, production or natural disasters and to make the land usable again.
According to the decree, the regulations, which consists of 44 articles in seven chapters, has been drafted with the purpose of advancing a basic national policy of "treasuring land highly, making a rational use of land and protecting land effectively."
The new regulations are also aimed at reinforcing management of land rehabilitation activities and improving the social, economic and ecological benefits of land use.
The new regulations stipulate land damaged by construction should be rehabilitated by the companies or people held accountable for the damage. Government authorities at county level and above will be responsible for land damaged by natural disasters.
The new regulations also offer incentives for land rehabilitation, including tax refunds on farmland occupancy to companies or people that have rehabilitated land.