Nong Ben Ju, the Farm Credit Bureau, and the KMT’s Agrarian Policy
Under the 1930 blueprint, the plan was to establish a double-tier financial system with the Farmers Bank of China driving the development of irrigation and production cooperatives as well a cooperative lending at the village level, and the proposed central agricultural bank—the Agricultural Bank of China—to drive land credit, sales and supply cooperatives, and fund village Farmers Banks. Only half of this plan was set in motion with the expansion of the Farmers Bank of China in 1935. By 1936 there was a sense of urgency to fully developing a nationwide structure and coordinating the organization for the provision of not only farm credit, but also credit for the development of agricultural infrastructure and related agricultural business interests. To deal with the many issues there was a need to coordinate a large number of agricultural activities, like rural credit, agricultural management, and technology. This was done under an administrative department called Nong Ben Ju. This chapter explores the genesis and outcomes of Nong Ben Ju (the Farm Credit Bureau) and related policy initiatives in the late 1930s and into the 1940s.