A total of 63.5 billion yuan (US$7.65 billion) is needed for the garbage disposal projects planned by China over the next decade, according to official sources.
These sources noted that the deregulated garbage disposal sector offers unprecedented opportunities for investors. Until recently, the government has been the major source of funding for the sector.
Some 8 to 9 billion yuan (a range of some US$840 million to US$1.08 billion) will be spent for trash-burning projects listed as key State projects in China during its 10th Five-Year Plan Period (2001-2005).
Garbage discarded last year by approximately 670 cities and towns around China totaled 135 million tons and much of it was not disposed of due mainly to limited disposal facilities.
The amount of urban trash has been growing at an annual rate of4.8 percent. Nevertheless, only 20 percent of this has been treated, leaving the remainder pile up outside cities and towns.
As the proportion of recyclable trash is increasing in urban China. The country is now currently introducing a garbage sorting system and imposing levies on the discharge of garbage to help recycle waste and dispose of trash.
Sources further said that dust and soil made up around 5 percent of the garbage discharged in Beijing in last year, compared with 53.22 percent in 1990, while the proportion of recyclable material rose significantly with paper accounting for 13.3 percent of the total and glass 6.5 percent, with a marked increase in the amount of renewable fabrics and plastics.
(Xinhua News Agency September 24, 2002)