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Syngenta sows food self-sufficiency for China with IPO

$10bn offering to fund acquisitions and R&D with focus on seeds

Trials to improve crop yields can be found throughout China at sites like this rice paddy outside Guangzhou. (Photo by Yusuke Hinata)

GUANGZHOU -- As concerns about food security push China to reduce its reliance on foreign seeds, the Switzerland-based, Chinese-owned Syngenta Group is gearing up for a nearly $10 billion initial public offering to fund the acquisition of vital seed technologies.

A paddy on the outskirts of Guangzhou growing Simiao rice, a variety promoted as a brand by local governments, has an eye-catching red Communist Party signboard in the middle of the field declaring that "the party leads rural development."

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