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China Donates US$1 Mln to Drought-hit Zambia
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China has given drought-hit Zambia US$1 million for it to purchase relief food.


At the signing ceremony held in Lusaka Thursday of the notes to acknowledge receipt of the fund, Chinese Ambassador to Zambia Li Baodong said that this donation is in the conditions that Zambia is suffering the food shortage because of drought.


Li said that the Chinese government is doing the job to help the Zambian government to implement the project of maintenance of water supply in Lusaka, Ndola and Kitwe with about 80 million yuan (about US$10 million).


The Chinese government has also agreed to provide the government with a batch of goods worth 10 million yuan (about US$1.2 million) to be used in the elections later this year.


On occasion Zambian Finance Minister Ng'andu Magande thanked the Chinese government for the assistance.


Magande assured Li the grant will be utilized to purchase relief food to benefit the hunger stricken people and accountability and transparency in the utilization of grant is strictly observed.


It is estimated that 1.7 million Zambians are facing food shortage due to the drought that hit most part of the southern African country in the 2004/05 farming season. In November, 2005, Zambian President Levy Mwanawasa declared the hunger situation in the country as a "national disaster," calling for international food aid.


(Xinhua News Agency February 10, 2006)

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