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China allocates another 3.78 bln yuan in subsidies to offset fuel hikes
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10:34, June 21, 2008

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The Ministry of Finance said late Friday it allocated another 3.78 billion yuan (548 million U.S. dollars) in subsidies to help low-income families against the latest fuel price hikes announced a day earlier.

Of the total, 1.85 billion yuan will go to urban low-income families, and the rest will be offered to such families in rural areas, the ministry said.

Low-income families in cities would get an extra 15 yuan for each person every month starting from July, 10 yuan for rural families, according to the announcement on Thursday.

The ministry had earmarked early on Friday 19.8 billion yuan in subsidies to cover extra expenses of groups and sectors that could be affected, including grain producers, taxis and urban and rural buses.

The subsidies were intended to "effectively ease the cost pressure on some low-income groups and public service industries exerted by the fuel price adjustment," said the ministry earlier.

It was part of the government effort to blunt the impact of a surprise increase of fuel prices, since inflationary pressure is already high.

China's benchmark gasoline and diesel oil retail prices were raised by 1,000 yuan per tonne and that of aviation kerosene went up by 1,500 yuan per tonne, effective on Friday, according to the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC).

However, fares for passenger rail services, urban and rural public transport and taxis would be unchanged, said the commission.

Source: Xinhua

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