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Chinese banks extend $25.35 bln loans to quake zone by end of Q1
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19:48, May 11, 2009

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· 5.12
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Chinese lenders had extended 172.4 billion yuan (25.35 billion U.S. dollars) loans for relief and reconstruction in regions devastated in the May 12 earthquake by the end of the first quarter, the People's Bank of China (PBoC) said Monday.

Outstanding loans at banks in quake-hit provinces, including Sichuan, Shaanxi and Gansu, surged 34 percent year on year to 2.29 trillion yuan at the end of March, as banks are asked to offer more credit support to quake regions.

The figure was compared to a 4.2-percent growth in bank loans nationwide, according to the PBoC.

The central bank said lenders offered a total credit line, or loan pledges, of up to 347.6 billion yuan for quake relief and reconstruction efforts.

In the same period, bank deposits at banks in quake-hit provinces surged by 34.2 percent to 3.79 trillion yuan at the end of March, as funds were poured back into accounts of residents in the quake zone for reconstruction. It compares to an average growth of 8.5 percent nationwide.

Among the total, 9.38 billion yuan were loaned to 446,000 rural households who lost their homes in the quake to rebuild houses, with 6.69 billion yuan to farmers in Sichuan, 2.14 billion yuan to Gansu families and 550 million yuan to Shaanxi survivors.

China is gearing up home rebuilding in the quake zone with both bank loans and government subsidies.

The central government has already arranged 40 billion yuan in government subsidies for farmers to rebuild their homes, with 35 billion yuan to Sichuan, 3.8 billion yuan to Gansu, 1 billion yuan to Shaanxi, 100million yuan to Chongqing and 100 million yuan to Yunnan, according to the Ministry of Civil Affairs.

Source: Xinhua

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