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China Invests Heavily in Huaihe River Harnessing

China will invest over 5 billion yuan (about US$605 million) this year in the harness and control of the Huaihe River.


The investment would be over twice as much as the average input from 1991 to 2003, said Qian Min, director of Ministry of Water Resources' Huaihe River Water Resources Committee.


The funds would be mainly spent on 19 key projects of the Huaihe River, in which 4 billion yuan (about US$484 million) would be allocated by the central government and the rest would come from provinces along the river including Anhui, Jiangsu, Henan and Shandong, said Qian.


The official said that the projects included reservoir building, dam consolidation, the control and harness of its branches and channeling the river into the sea.


The 19 projects were estimated to cost 44.7 billion yuan (about US$5.4 billion) in total, Qian said, and 22 billion yuan (about US$2.7 billion) had already been spent on it till 2003.


All the projects would be completed by 2007, according to the plan set by the Ministry of Water Resources. By then, China would have a powerful comprehensive flood prevention and control system.


The Huaihe River is one of China's seven biggest rivers, where the flood happens most frequently. Last year, the Huaihe River experienced its worst flooding since 1954.


(Xinhua News Agency April 6, 2004)

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