China's cities, exhausted of their resources, will be on the track to sustainable development by 2015.
A new guideline issued by the State Council has set up a timetable to rehabilitate problem-plagued cities that call for solutions to fix major issues by 2010.
The central government will provide additional financial support from 2007 to 2010 to help boost the cities' capability to provide basic-level public services, especially in the fields of social security, education, medical care, environmental protection, and infrastructure construction.
The State Council ordered the Ministry of Finance, National Development and Reform Commission, the Ministry of Land and Resources, and the Office of the Leading Group for Revitalizing Northeast China to hand in a list of resource-exhausted cities and concrete plans to redevelop them.
The guideline also included policies favoring poor, urban families.
City leaders will be evaluated based on their performances in tackling unemployment, poverty, social security system building, and environmental protection.
Many of the former resource-rich cities are concentrated in northeastern China.
(CRI December 25, 2007)