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The Gov't Is Only Three Digits Away
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'114' has shifted. No longer is it a simple yellow pages service hotline to obtain telephone numbers and addresses for restaurants and hotels. From yesterday, '114' in Zhejiang Province has begun service as a telephone exchange for the local government, the Zhejiang Daily reported today.

The service was launched by the Zhejiang provincial government and the provincial telecom company. Government at all levels province-wide published about 8,000 phone numbers for government affairs transparency, making it very difficult for the public to know which number to call for which issue.

Now all the public need do is dial '114' before being put through to the desired department. In case no answer is forthcoming, they will be able to leave a voice message and the call will be returned.

According to statistics, '114' receives about 60,000 calls every day in the province, for government affairs and convenient information consultancy. The practice is the first in the country.

( by Zhang Yunxing November 28, 2006)

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