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Legal, Economic Measures to Cut Pollution
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China is putting more emphasis on economic measures to save energy and cut pollutants discharge, including gradual reform of the pricing system of the resources products to reflect their true scarcity and impact on the environment, a high-ranking official said in Beijing on Monday.

"The Chinese government has introduced lots of financial and tax incentives to promote the use of energy-saving technologies and products," Ma Kai, minister in charge of the National Development and Reform Commission, the top economic planning agency, told a press conference.

The country will continue to use comprehensive measures that compass economic and legal measures and necessary administrative orders to conserve energy.

In this regard, China has enacted laws on environmental protection and renewable energy.

As a major means, energy efficiency and pollutant discharge reduction will be key factors in the performance assessments of local officials at various levels.

Energy efficiency and pollutant discharge reduction should be set as indices for assessing economic and social development in all localities and the performance of government and company leaders, the State Council said in a circular issued on Sunday.

They will receive a negative performance assessment if they fail to reach goals for energy efficiency and pollutant discharge reduction regardless of achievements in other fields, according to the document.

This means the performance of officials will not be judged merely by the growth of gross domestic product in all localities, Ma told reporters.

(Xinhua News Agency June 4, 2007)

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