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China gets 76 bln yuan in donations for Sichuan quake
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08:41, May 12, 2009

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China received about 76.7 billion yuan (about 11.2 billion U.S. dollars) in cash and relief materials from domestic and foreign donors after the massive earthquake last May 12, official sources said Monday.

By April 30, a total of 65.996 billion yuan in cash and relief materials worth 10.716 billion yuan were donated to areas affected by the quake, the Ministry of Civil Affairs said.

Most of the donations have been or will be spent on the construction of new houses, schools, medical institutions, welfare and cultural facilities for local people.

However, some 20 billion yuan of donations has not been transferred to the quake areas, largely because some reconstruction projects have yet been

finalized, the ministry said.

For example, money to be used to build a school

or to sponsor orphans will be allocated in accordance with the development of the project.

The ministry, which oversaw disaster relief work after the earthquake, said the use of the donated money and materials had been closely monitored to ensure a transparent and regulated practice.

There have been no reports of malpractice in the past year, the ministry said, citing latest report of the National Audit Office.

Also on Monday, a government white paper said concerted efforts of the entire country and the people throughout the world played a major role in

helping quake-affected areas to overcome serious consequences of the disaster.

The paper, "China's Actions of Disaster Prevention and Reduction," was published by the State Council Information Office a day ahead of the anniversary of the earthquake.

The magnitude-8.0 quake, with the epicenter in Wenchuan of southwest China's Sichuan Province, left more than 87,000 people dead or missing and more than 374,640 injured.

More than 3 million domestic and foreign volunteers worked in disaster relief, while 10 million others participated in quake relief activities around the country, the paper said.

It said Chinese people, enterprises and social organizations were actively involved in emergency relief work after the quake.

About 1 percent of the population volunteered for quake relief work across China, making it the first large-scale volunteer rescue effort in the country.

The paper noted that the government considered it important to involve the public fully in disaster prevention and relief. It said the country had a tax system that encouraged donations

and had guided volunteers to participate in disaster work.

At the end of 2008, China had 1,531 charity foundations and about 100 million people giving time as volunteers, it said.


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