China to step up water conservancy development efforts

08:17, January 30, 2011      

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Construction workers install low-pressure water pipelines in Heze, east China's Shandong Province, Jan. 25, 2011. Water conservancy programs are under rapid construction to relieve the local farmland from the recent drought. (Xinhua/Guo Xulei)
China will intensify efforts to accelerate the development of the nation's water conservancy and promote the sustainable use of water resources, a central government statement said Saturday.

China will strive to improve the country's underdeveloped water conservancy works over the next five to 10 years, said the document issued jointly by the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China and the State Council, China's cabinet.

"Floods and drought in recent years have exposed weaknesses in water conservancy infrastructures," the document said.

The country aims to build effective flood control and drought relief systems by the end of 2020, it said.

It will complete the harnessing of its major medium- and small-sized rivers within the next five years, during the 12th Five-year Program (2011-2015) period, said the document.

In the same five-year period, the country also aims to maintain annual water consumption at below 670 billion cubic meters.

More efforts will be made to improve water quality and irrigate farmland, it said.

The country will double average annual spending on water conservancy over the next ten years compared with that of 2010. and up to 10 percent of local land transaction fees will go to farmland irrigation projects, it said.

The central government spend 98.7 billion yuan (about 15 billion U.S.dollars) on water conservancy projects in 2010.

The government will also encourage loans to be given to and private investment in the water sector, to ensure funding for the country's water conservancy development, it said.

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