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China to invest 2 bln yuan for ethnic minorities' economic, social development
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12:18, April 13, 2009

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China will appropriate more than 2 billion yuan (293 million U.S. dollars) as a development fund for ethnic minorities during 2009-2010 to accelerate their economic and social development, said the National Human Rights Action Plan of China released Monday by the State Council's Information Office.

The state will continue to promote economic development in areas inhabited by ethnic minorities and raise their standard of living, the plan said.

Of the sum, nearly 1 billion yuan will be used to help the construction of infrastructure, the renovation of dilapidated houses, the improvement of people's living and production conditions, industrial development, salaries and social programs in regions where ethnic minorities with relatively small populations live in compact communities, according to the plan.

The state will continue to support the economic and social development of border areas, focusing on solving difficulties in people's livelihood in those areas, the plan said.

Poverty elimination in extremely impoverished ethnic villages will be a priority, it said. The goal is to make these villages have access to roads, electricity, telephone service, and radio and TV programs, making sure that these villages have schools, clinics, safe drinking water for people and livestock, safe housing as well as farm fields or pastureland that can provide sufficient food and clothing for the villagers.

China is a unified country composed of 56 ethnic groups identified and acknowledged by the central government. The 55 minority ethnic groups - Han Chinese not included - have a total population of 106.43 million, accounting for 8.41 percent of the total population of China.

Source: Xinhua

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