BEIJING, July 1 (Xinhua) -- China's agricultural yields could be hit by El Nino, a weather pattern that can bring drought in some parts while causing flooding in others, the agricultural ministry warned on Tuesday.
El Nino of medium to strong magnitude could be experienced, which could trigger low temperatures and rainfall in south China and drought in the north in autumn, and bring earlier frosts to the country's northeast, the ministry cited China Meteorological Administration as saying.
El Nino, the Spanish word for boy, is a warming of sea surface in the Pacific that occurs every four to 12 years.
The weather pattern would negatively affect the yields of rice in south China and grains in the north, the ministry said.
El Nino could result in the worldwide drop, by 2 percent, of yields of corn, spring wheat, winter wheat and rice, the world's top four agricultural products, according to official statistics.
However, the ministry cited an unnamed expert as saying that the impact of El Nino on agricultural production would be limited, as the weather pattern would only affect some parts of the country.
The ministry urged agricultural authorities at all levels to maintain vigilance against bad weather and work closely with weather observatories to prepare emergency plans for the impact of El Nino.