|Chinese Vice Minister of Environmental Protection Wu Xiaoqing and other senior officials from the Ministry of Environmental Protection give a press conference for the second session of China's 12th National People's Congress (NPC) on environment protection, in Beijing, capital of China, March 8, 2014. (Xinhua/Wang Peng)|
BEIJING, March 8 -- China is expected to invest more than 5 trillion yuan (817 billion U.S. dollars) in environmental protection during the 12th Five-year Plan period (2011-2015), an environmental protection official said on Saturday.
The investment comes from the government, financial institutions and enterprises and also includes social capital, said Wu Xiaoqing, vice minister of environmental protection, on the sidelines of the ongoing annual session of the National People's Congress, China's top legislature.
China has been increasing its spending on environmental protection steadily, with an investment of 602.6 billion yuan in 2011, 825.3 billion yuan in 2012 and an estimated sum of 1 trillion yuan in 2013, he said.
The government's investment in this area will increase substantially in 2014 with the introduction of a water pollution prevention and control action plan this year, according to Wu.
China released an air pollution prevention and control action plan in September 2013, which will be backed by 1.7 trillion yuan in investment, he said.