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Vegetable prices in snow-hit areas down 3.2%
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Vegetables in 14 snow-affected provinces in China monitored by the Ministry of Commerce (MOC) decreased 3.2 percent on Feb. 12 from the average price before the Spring Festival starting on Feb. 7, a MOC source told Xinhua on Thursday.

Winter storms have plagued the country's south since mid-January, leading to widespread traffic jams, blackouts and crop loss in 19 provinces. The weather chaos killed at least 107 people and affected about 150 million residents, according to the Ministry of Civil Affairs.

Chinese Commerce Minister Chen Deming earlier this month called on local agencies to ensure market supply during the Spring Festival season, adding the MOC was endeavoring to increase the market supply of vegetables, fruit and meat in snow-strangled areas.

The MOC, the Ministry of Railway and the Ministry of Communications held a supply and sale coordination meeting in the southern Hainan Province on Feb. 2. It decided vegetables and fruit from Hainan would be provided to the snow-hit Anhui, Jiangxi, Henan, Hubei, Hunan and Guizhou provinces, among others.

Official statistics revealed that between Feb. 6 and Feb. 12, 170,000 tons of vegetables were shipped to 14 snow-stricken provinces, including Jiangsu, Hunan, Anhui and Guizhou, to ease a shortage of fresh produce and price increase pressures there.

(Xinhua News Agency February 15, 2008)

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