WB Loans Used to Consolidate Dykes

China will use US$210 million in loans from the World Bank (WB) to consolidate dykes along the flood-prone Yangtze River.

The three-year project will be carried out in central China's Hubei and Hunan provinces, World Bank water conservancy expert Daniel J. Gunar Atnam said Saturday.

In addition, the Chinese central government will allocate more than 2 billion yuan (about US$240 million), Hubei will provide more than 500 million yuan, and Hunan will offer over 200 million yuan, in matching funds.

The dykes will work together with the gigantic Three Gorges project to control floods on the Yangtze, Atnam said.

The bank also hopes to introduce state-of-the-art technology and management expertise to China through the project, he said.

Xiong Maohao, a project official, said that investment in Hubei will be 2.583 billion yuan, 20 percent of which will be used for the resettlement of some 28,800 people in 6,494 families.

Some 400 million people are living along the 6,300-km-long Yangtze.

China has injected huge amounts of funds into consolidating major dykes on the lower reaches of the river, bringing floods under control in 1998 and 1999.

(People's Daily)

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